US President Donald Trump has branded the global coronavirus epidemic “the Chinese virus,” worsening a deepening diplomatic dispute over the disease between the US and China.
Rather than just naming the deadly disease which by its given name, COVID-19, has killed 6,500 worldwide, the president faced allegations of performing at his base by trying to put the blame for the virus at the door of Beijing.
Trump, after giving an address on Monday warning of a possible recession, posted on Twitter: “The United States will be powerfully supporting those industries, like Airlines and others, that are particularly affected by the Chinese Virus. We will be stronger than ever before!”
To avoid discrimination or stigmatization, the World Health Organization has advised against terms that link the virus to China or the city of Wuhan where it was first detected.
The remarks came as Trump faces allegations that he is losing influence of the situation and has issued a set of sweeping rules that will effectively rewrite American society’s norms for the next 15 days.
The US has had more than 4,600 confirmed cases of the virus so far, and the outbreak has caused 79 reported deaths.
Last week, vocal Chinese foreign ministry official Zhao Lijian accused the US military of taking the virus to Wuhan. The US summoned the Chinese ambassador Cui Tiankai, and sent a “stern” warning to Cui.
Chinese diplomats and officials have begun pushing the idea that the virus did not originate in China as the global infections have surpassed those within China.
Trump introduced the latest recommendations on Monday, urging people to restrict their contacts with others in the hopes of minimizing the epidemic in the next two weeks to avoid being overwhelmed by the hospitals.
We have an unseen enemy,’ said the president at a news conference, urging Americans not to assemble in groups of over 10 people.
Trump said “people shouldn’t have regular bars, restaurants, and food courts, and would be best suited to work from home and attend virtual school.
This one is terrible.This one is really poor,” he said. “Any Americans who test positive for the virus will stay home. An age range for the elderly was not mentioned for staying at home. ”
If everybody is making this transition or these vital improvements and sacrifices now, we’re going to unite as one nation together and we’re going to fight the virus, and we’re going to have a huge celebration overall,’ he explained.
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Center for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, urged Americans to take the non-mandatory recommendations seriously.
The advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention called for the cancellation and postponement of 50 people or more events for the next eight weeks.
Federal offices in Washington, DC, are available, thus allowing staff to operate remotely with flexibility.