Zarif lauds China’s successful measures to contain coronavirus epidemic

February 5, 2020 - 0:12

TEHRAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has lauded China’s “successful measures” to fight the coronavirus epidemic.

“I expressed appreciation and gratitude for China’s successful measures to fight the epidemic,” Zarif tweeted in Chinese on Tuesday. 

“China prevented the epidemic not only from getting worse at home but also from spreading internationally,” Press TV quoted Zarif as saying.

Iran’s foreign minister also condemned the United States for taking advantage of the epidemic.

“China is obviously more responsible and successful than the United States in preventing and controlling H1N1 flu (in the U.S.) in 2009,” he added.

The U.S. has declared a public health emergency and denied entry to foreign nationals who had visited China in the past two weeks. The U.S. has confirmed 11 cases of the coronavirus.

Reportedly, there are more than 17,000 confirmed cases of the virus in China. Some 425 people have so far died in China.

In an interview with Fox News on Sunday, President Trump said the U.S. has "shut down" the coronavirus coming in from China. 

“We’ve offered China help but we can’t have thousands of people coming in who may have this problem, the coronavirus,” he said. “So we’re going to see what happens, but we did shut it down.”

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying complained that America's actions have “unceasingly manufactured and spread panic.”

“It is precisely developed countries like the United States with strong epidemic prevention capabilities and facilities that have taken the lead in imposing excessive restrictions contrary to [World Health Organization] recommendations,” she said.

Zarif also held a phone conversation with Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Monday, praising the Chinese government for its responsibility and efforts to control the crisis.

“MOFA of the IRI and his Chinese counterpart have discussed the latest efforts to contain the novel coronavirus. Dr. Zarif lauded the Chinese government for its responsibility and efforts to control the crisis and expressed his opposition to politicization of such issues,” Iran’s Foreign Ministry tweeted on Tuesday.

According to Xinhua, Wang expressed thanks to Iran for supporting China in fighting the epidemic, hailing Zarif as the first foreign minister publicly voicing support for China, which has shown the Iranian people’s friendliness towards the Chinese people.

Wang also thanked Iran for providing China with medical supplies at the critical moment of epidemic prevention and control.

China has established a nationwide system to fight the epidemic with the strictest and most thorough measures, Wang said, adding that with his country’s unremitting efforts, the fatality rate of the novel coronavirus nationwide has been controlled under 2.1 percent, far lower than the rate of any other epidemic in China, and also lower than the 17.4-percent fatality rate of the H1N1 influenza in the United States in 2009.

Wang said that China has full confidence and ability to win the fight against the epidemic.

In fighting the epidemic, China has been responsible not only for its own people, but also for the international community, he said.

NA/PA

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