China will provide support within its capacity to countries with weaker health systems to help them strengthen their epidemic prevention and control capabilities, a foreign ministry spokesperson said Tuesday.
Spokesperson Zhao Lijian made the remarks when asked to comment on a statement from World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus's video address to the meeting of health ministers of African Union (AU) member states Saturday.
Tedros said the WHO is still concerned about the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in countries with weaker health systems and called on the international community to support the most ill-prepared countries.
Since the COVID-19 outbreak, the Chinese government and people have taken the most comprehensive, stringent and thorough prevention and control measures, which have achieved remarkable effects as proven by facts, Zhao said.
By quoting Tedros, Zhao said China's effective measures have contained the spread of the virus inside China and to other countries, providing time for the world to prepare for the epidemic.
African countries have provided precious support and assistance to China the first time after the epidemic despite their limited conditions, the spokesperson said.
Noting that the 36th Ordinary Session of the AU Executive Council and the AU Peace and Security Council Meeting have issued communiques in support of China's efforts to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, Zhao said the meeting of health ministers of AU member states also highly praised China's anti-epidemic measures.
"Africa stands with China in times of adversity. This is a perfect demonstration of a community with a shared future for mankind," Zhao said.
As cherished by traditional Chinese culture, "a drop of water in need, shall be returned with a spring indeed," China will keep this friendship and assistance in mind, he said.
China will continue to implement the results of the Belt and Road construction and the outcomes of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Beijing Summit, provide support within its capacity to countries with weaker health systems to help them strengthen their epidemic prevention and control capabilities, and safeguard regional and global public health security, said the spokesperson.
China on Tuesday urged the U.S. side to discard its outdated Cold War mentality and zero-sum game concept, correctly view and safeguard China-U.S. exchanges and cooperation in science, technology and culture, and do more to enhance mutual trust and cooperation between the two countries.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian made the remarks at a press briefing in response to claims by U.S. defense and health officials that China used the expertise of American universities to enhance its military and technological competitiveness.
"China's scientific and technological achievements have been achieved through the hard work and wisdom of the Chinese people, including the vast number of intellectuals, rather than through theft or robbery," Zhao said, adding that statistics show from 2009 to 2019, Chinese scientists published 2.6 million international papers, ranking second in the world.
"It is in the common interest of both sides to strengthen scientific and technological exchanges and cooperation," Zhao said, noting a few U.S. officials, in the name of national security, have fabricated the so-called China's "theft" of U.S. scientific research achievements with ulterior motives.
Some U.S. university directors also believe that U.S. officials' concerns about national security are exaggerated and discriminatory, and say that cooperation with China is in fact crucial to promoting the development of science and technology, Zhao noted.
Transnational talent flow has promoted the world's scientific and technological progress. All countries including the United States are actively carrying out international talent exchanges and cooperation, the spokesperson said.
The relevant measures taken by China, similar to the common practices of other countries in the world, are aimed at promoting the flow of talent between China and other countries, and encouraging and promoting international scientific and technological cooperation, he added.
President Donald Trump is calling his trip to India "unforgettable," "extraordinary" and an expression of "love" as he delivers a joint statement with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi following their bilateral talks.
Trump announced that India has signed a deal to purchase more than $3 billion of advanced military equipment, including helicopters. And he says the two leaders made progress on what he describes as a "comprehensive trade deal" after talks.
Trump also says he and first lady Melania Trump "have been awed by the majesty of India" and will "always remember the magnificent welcome" they received upon their arrival.
Modi, meanwhile, says the two had a productive exchange on issues including defense cooperation, energy and technology and said talks will continue.
He says that he and Trump have now met five times over the past eight months and said ties between the two nations is the "most important partnership of the 21st century."
President Donald Trump is lavishing praise on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying the Indian people love him "and that's a good thing."
Trump joked Tuesday that the thousands of people who joined the two leaders Monday at a huge stadium where there more for Modi than himself. Modi was re-elected with a huge mandate, leading his Hindu nationalist party to a massive victory in the 2019 election.
Speaking at Hyderabad House in New Delhi, Trump said that "every time" he mentioned Modi's name there were cheers, "so they love you in India and that's a good thing."
On the second day of his whirlwind trip, Trump described his visit as "amazing in every sense of the word." And he says progresses is being made on trade, fighter jet purchases and energy.
President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump tossed colorful flower petals on a memorial to Mohandas Gandhi on Tuesday in New Delhi during a wreath laying ceremony.
The two scooped handfuls of the petals— Trump with gusto — their shoes off in a sign of respect. The memorial is at Raj Ghat where the famed independence leader was cremated after his assassination in 1948.
Trump also signed a guest book and was presented with a bust of Gandhi as Indian music played on a loudspeaker.
They ended the visit planting a tree at the site.
President Donald Trump is kicking off his second day in India with an elaborate outdoor welcome ceremony in front of the grand Rashtrapati Bhavan Presidential Palace in New Delhi.
The president's armored car, nicknamed "The Beast," was welcomed with cannon fire and accompanied by a parade of colorfully-dressed soldiers on horseback as it arrived at the palace. The welcome ceremony included hundreds of military officials, marching with instruments and swords.
Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are expected to talk trade and other issues Tuesday as the president's two-day visit to the subcontinent delves into substance after opening with a heavy dose of pomp and pageantry.
The jam-packed day will include a joint statement with Modi, meetings with business leaders and embassy official, a press conference and a state dinner.
Japanese health officials and experts on a government panel acknowledged Monday that the quarantine of the virus-hit cruise ship Diamond Princess was not perfect, but defended Japan's decision to release about 1,000 passengers after 14 days.
The officials said Japanese health authorities faced tough challenges in dealing with a foreign-operated ship that required international negotiations in the absence of established rules in such a crisis.
"The ship was not designed to be a hospital. The ship was a ship," said Shigeru Omi, a former regional director for the World Health Organization. "Of course isolation was not ideal as would be expected from a hospital, so in my view although the isolation was somehow effective, to a large extent it was not perfect."
More than 690 people were sickened on the ship and three died.
Omi, a public health expert who heads the Japan Community Health Care Organization, said it was the best they could do. While some people criticized Japan for confining more than 3,700 passengers and crew on the ship in what they called a botched quarantine, he said it was not feasible to test and relocate all of them for quarantine elsewhere.
Some medical experts who helped on the ship have said the quarantine was poorly managed.
On Monday, the health ministry said a quarantine official and a government employee who helped on the ship had tested positive and were hospitalized, bringing the number of confirmed infections among government officials to six.
Japanese passengers who did not share a room with patients, tested negative and had no symptoms at the end of the 14-day quarantine period were allowed to go home on public transportation. The sight of them traveling on bullet trains and buses with other people was viewed as an alarming sign of a Japanese lack of a sense of crisis.
Omi, however, said the passengers who passed the criteria should be treated as anyone else, and those who frequent public places in the community should be deemed equally at risk. He said the ship was a condensed version of what is happening in Japanese communities.
The number of patients in the country continues to rise, and Japan is now at a critical juncture, experts say. It has about 160 cases outside the ship, including a dozen new cases reported Monday.
In their assessment of the spread of the virus in Japan, the 12-member experts panel raised concern about the growing number of cases whose timing, location and source of transmission are unknown.
At least 18 American and several Australian former passengers have tested positive after returning home. Experts said infections are also difficult to discover because COVID-19 can be transmitted during its incubation period by asymptomatic patients.
In Japan, a former passenger in her 60s who tested negative days before getting off the ship then tested positive after taking a train home. Experts said it was unfortunate but within their expectations.
There is a "small possibility" of scattered cases that will create small clusters in communities after passengers return, said Norio Ohmagari, an infectious diseases expert at the National Center for Global Health and Medicine. "So I'd like to call upon all the travelers who disembarked from the ship ... to report to the authorities as soon as possible" if they develop any symptoms, he said. "By doing that, we can prevent another cluster from happening."
Most of about 1,000 crew members remain on board the ship under quarantine. Because of the need to run the ship and serve the passengers during the original quarantine, crew members could not be properly isolated.
Malaysia's king on Monday accepted Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad's shocking resignation but reappointed him as interim leader following the collapse of the ruling alliance in a major political upheaval less than two years after its historic election victory.
The stunning turn of events come amid plans by Mahathir's supporters in his Bersatu party to team up with opposition parties to form a new government and thwart the transition of power to his named successor, Anwar Ibrahim.
Minutes before Mahathir tendered his resignation to the palace, Bersatu said it would leave the four-party Alliance of Hope and support Mahathir as prime minister. Eleven other lawmakers, including several Cabinet ministers, announced they were quitting Anwar's party to form an independent bloc.
Bersatu later said Mahathir had also quit as party chairman. The withdrawal of more than three dozen lawmakers means the ruling alliance has lost its majority in Parliament, throwing the country into an uncertain future and sparking fears of more turmoil over how the political drama will play out.
King Sultan Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, who met leaders from the new faction on Sunday and both Anwar and Mahathir on Monday, accepted Mahathir's resignation, the chief secretary to the government, Mohamad Zuki Ali, said in a statement.
Mohamad Zuki said the king also decided Mahathir should continue as interim leader until a new prime minister is chosen and a new Cabinet formed. He said the king also dissolved the Cabinet on Mahathir's advice, essentially sealing the breakup of the current government.
The king's decision helped bring some political stability to the country after the series of dizzying events unraveled Sunday with maneuvers aimed at keeping Mahathir in power and blocking Anwar from the top job. Horse trading is expected as both factions scramble to build enough support to take power.
Anwar said Monday after meeting with Mahathir and with other alliance leaders that Mahathir was not involved in the conspiracy and had quit because he didn't want to be associated with the former corrupt regime that he worked hard to oust in the 2018 polls.
"His name was used, by those within my party and outside," Anwar told reporters. Mahathir "reiterated to me what he had said earlier, that he played no part in it and he made it very clear, that in no way will he ever work with those associated with the past regime."
Anwar said he pleaded with Mahathir to stay on to jointly defeat the conspirators but he refused.
Anwar was Mahathir's deputy during Mahathir's first stint as prime minister but they fell out politically. The pair reunited in a political pact in the May 2018 election, which ousted a ruling coalition that has governed the country since independence from Britain in 1957. Tension has erupted as Mahathir refused to set a date to relinquish power despite a preelection agreement to hand over power to Anwar.
The political plot by the defectors would include an alliance with the Malay party of disgraced former leader Najib Razak, who with several of his party leaders are standing trial on corruption charges. It would also recruit a fundamentalist Islamic party that rules two states and champions Islamic laws. The two Malay parties still have strong support from ethnic Malays, who account for 60% of Malaysia's 32 million people.
The political drama came just two days after all of the parties in the now-crumbling alliance agreed that Mahathir alone should decide when he would step down after Malaysia hosts an Asia-Pacific regional meeting in November.
Mahathir has remained silent, but many Malaysians reacted with dismay and shock, saying moves to form a "backdoor" government would be unethical and that a new election should be called.
Electoral watchdog group Bersih, which has organized several protest rallies in the past, warned it would organize a mass rally if an undemocratic government is formed. Bersih and about three dozen civil society groups said democracy was in peril and demanded the defectors quit and new elections be called.
Analysts said a new "backdoor" government could give rise to Malay Islamic supremacy that would derail Malaysia's multi-ethnic society.
"If the new government goes through, Malaysia is heading toward a very regressive stage whereby racial supremacy and religious extremism would become the rule of the day," said Oh Ei Sun, a senior fellow at the Singapore Institute of International Affairs.