Ambassador Sun Weidong Briefs BJP Leader Vijay Jolly on China's Prevention and Control Efforts of Pneumonia Epidemic Caused by the Novel Coronavirus

On February 1st, H.E. Mr. Sun Weidong, Chinese Ambassador to India, met with Mr. Vijay Jolly, BJP leader and President of Delhi Study Group. Minister Counsellor Gao Xiangyang, Consular Counsellor Chen Binghuang, and Director (Political) Yang Tianwen of the Chinese Embassy and members of the Delhi Study Group were present.

Mr. Jolly expressed his support and solidarity with China and its people at this difficult time when China is combating the epidemic caused by the novel coronavirus. Mr. Jolly said as a true neighborhood friend, we are concerned at the great distress faced by Chinese brothers and sisters. There are about 50,000 Indian diaspora in China. Most of them are students who study in Chinese universities. Their families in India are concerned about the safety of Indian diaspora. I hope Your Excellency will kindly provide first-hand information on China's response to the outbreak.

Ambassador Sun appreciated Mr. Jolly's support and solidarity with the Chinese government and people in combating the epidemic, reflecting the friendship between China and India. Mr. Sun said that since the outbreak of the epidemic, President Xi Jinping has attached great importance and given many important instructions. The CPC Central Committee has set up a leading group for comprehensive prevention and control of the epidemic. We have built an all-round and multi-level prevention and control system focusing on Wuhan city and Hubei province. Wuhan is the epicentre of the outbreak and core area of prevention and control work. Wuhan has put restrictions in place for urban transport and movement of people to curb the spread of the virus into larger areas. These are rigorous, decisive but necessary measures to control the epidemic in a bid to bring the situation back to normal as soon as possible.

Firstly, China with all her might supports Wuhan and Hubei. Entrusted by President Xi Jinping, Premier Li Keqiang went to Wuhan to give directions to the prevention and control work. As of January 30, over 50 medical teams with over 6,000 doctors and nurses have arrived in Hubei to support the fight against the epidemic. Donations of money and materials have poured into the region.

Secondly, the Chinese government has mobilized national resources and opened green channels to ensure the supply of medical equipments and living materials in Hubei. All supermarkets are open, the commodity prices are stable and supplies of daily necessities are sufficient in Wuhan.

Thirdly, we are strengthening case treatment to reduce severe and fatal cases. We set up a national expert group on scientific research to speed up the development of vaccines. We built two makeshift hospitals in Wuhan in ten-odd days. The epidemic is generally preventable, controllable and curable. Up to January 30, more than 200 confirmed patients have recovered and been discharged from hospitals. There is no need to panic or overreact.

Fourthly, we are strengthening international cooperation in public health. The Chinese Government carried out international cooperation with openness, transparency and high sense of responsibility. WHO Director-General Dr.Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said: "Declaration of the epidemic a public health emergency of international concern(PHEIC) is not a vote of no confidence in China. On the contrary, WHO continues to have confidence in China's capacity to control the outbreak. China's efforts to combat the disease deserve respect and appreciation. In fact, many of the prevention and containment measures China has taken far exceed relevant requirements for dealing with emergencies. In many ways, China is actually setting a new standard for outbreak response." He stressed that the WHO disfavors or even opposes imposing travel or trade restrictions on China. We don't think it is helpful for certain country to hype up the situation, or even create panic.

Fifth, China and India should strengthen cooperation. Last night, Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi had a telephone call with Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar. Mr. Wang Yi said that "we have taken the most comprehensive and rigorous containment and mitigation measures. China's efforts are not only protecting the health of its own people, but also the health of people around the world". I want to stress that under the leadership of President Xi Jinping, we have the confidence, capacity and determination to defeat the epidemic. China is ready to further strengthen public health cooperation with the international community including India. We hope that the Indian side can understand and support China's epidemic prevention efforts, respect the professional advice of the WHO, maintain normal personnel and trade exchanges between China and India to jointly overcome the difficulties.

Mr. Jolly expressed his gratitude for Ambassador Sun's briefing on the latest China's prevention and control work and highly appreciated China's prompt and strong response to the epidemic, as well as its high sense of responsibility towards the life and health of the Chinese citizens and foreigners in Wuhan. Mr. Jolly agreed that there is no need to overreact or panic. He is confident that China will eventually prevail over the battle against the epidemic.

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