China Defends Response To Novel Coronavirus Outbreak In New Report, Announces Plans To Introduce Any Successful Vaccines Before Final Data Available

AP: China defends its coronavirus response in new report
“Senior Chinese officials released a lengthy report Sunday on the nation’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, defending their government’s actions and saying that China had provided information in a timely and transparent manner. China ‘wasted no time’ in sharing information such as the genome sequence for the new virus with the World Health Organization as well as relevant countries and regional organizations, according to the report. … U.S. officials have been critical of China’s early response, adding to a deterioration of U.S.-China relations over trade and technology and pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong. Asked how China would repair its relations with the rest of the world, Vice Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu said that cooperation over the pandemic had improved ties with most other countries…” (Moritsugu, 6/8).

New York Times: China Hails Its Virus Triumphs, and Glosses Over Its Mistakes
“…Like much of China’s state propaganda on the coronavirus, the report provides a sanitized version of events, leaving out political and bureaucratic problems that exacerbated the crisis when it first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan. … The report offers no new information on the origins of the virus. In a news conference on Sunday, a top Chinese official dismissed accusations about Beijing’s conduct as ‘completely unwarranted and unreasonable,’ an apparent reference to numerous accusations by the Trump administration that China is to blame for the pandemic…” (Bradsher, 6/7).

The Telegraph: China formulates plan to roll out vaccine before clinical trials are finished in race against Trump
“China may deploy coronavirus vaccines as early as September to at-risk groups even if clinical trials have yet to be completed. Health officials are drafting guidelines for administering vaccines under testing to priority groups, such as medical personnel, the latest sign Beijing is ramping up competition against the U.S. to produce a global cure. … Success could help Beijing deflect global anger over its cover-up of the pandemic and buoy its coronavirus-ravaged economy. It would also be a blow to Donald Trump’s ‘warp-speed’ plans for a vaccine…” (Yan, 6/6).

Additional coverage of China’s new COVID-19 report, vaccine research efforts, and other issues related to the pandemic is available from AP, New York Times (2), and Reuters.

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