Response to media query by Spokesperson of Chinese Embassy in India Counselor Ji Rong on the timeline of COVID-19 pandemic
2020/04/14

  Q:Recently, some Indian media claimed that the earliest case of COVID-19 in China happened in November, 2019, and once again blamed China for concealing the real situation of Covid-19 pandemic and delaying the treatment. What’s your comment on this?

  A: Recently, certain Indian media ignored the facts that China had officially released and continued to blame China for concealing the real situation. These claims are fact-distorting and irresponsible. I would like to introduce again the timeline of China’s response to COVID-19 since its outbreak.

  The Wuhan Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in central China's Hubei Province detected cases of unknown pneumonia in late December 2019. On Dec. 30, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission issued an urgent notification to medical institutions ordering efforts to appropriately treat patients with pneumonia of unknown cause. On the following day, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission reminded the public not to go to enclosed public places or gather and suggested wearing face masks when going out. On Jan. 7, Chinese President Xi Jinping made instructions on epidemic response when presiding over a meeting of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. On Jan. 23, China took unprecedented, decisive and strong measures to shut down the Wuhan's outbound channels.

  During the fight against the epidemic, the Chinese Government has always maintained an open and transparent attitude on timely releasing and sharing epidemic information. Starting from Jan 3, China has been regularly informing the World Health Organization, relevant countries including the US, regional organizations, and China's Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan about the pneumonia outbreak. On Jan 12, China submitted to the WHO the genome sequence of the novel coronavirus, which was published by the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GISAID) and shared globally. From Jan 21, the National Health Commission started to update via its official website and its new media platform the epidemic information of the previous day on a daily basis, which totalled 81 times by April 10. Starting from Jan 27, under the joint prevention and control mechanism of the State Council, press conference was held on a daily base. Up till Apr. 10, 75 press conferences had been held on a wide range of topics, including nearly 1000 questions raised by Chinese and foreign reporters on the epidemic prevention and control, medical treatment and scientific research.

  The China-WHO joint expert team started a nine-day field visit in China from Feb. 16, and praised China's unprecedented public health responses to the COVID-19 outbreak, which yielded notable results in slowing the spread of the epidemic and blocking human-to-human transmission of the virus. The UN Secretary-General António Guterres described China's sacrifice in fighting and containing the spread of COVID-19 as a great contribution to all mankind.

  China has always upheld the concept of a community with a shared future for mankind and done its best to prevent and control the epidemic. We hope certain media and people discard ideological prejudice and do not ignore with tinted glasses the great sacrifice Chinese people have made and the precious time China bought for international response. Virus knows no national borders, and the epidemic distinguishes no races. Only with solidarity and by cooperation, can the international community prevail over the pandemic and safeguard the common homeland of humanity. At present, the Indian people are fighting against the epidemic under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. China will stand together with India to jointly overcome the epidemic at an early date.

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