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Chinese state-media chief mocks Trump for getting coronavirus – here’s what he said

President Donald J. Trump addresses his remarks during the coronavirus update briefing Wednesday, April 8, 2020, in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House. (Official White House Photo by D. Myles Cullen)
October 02, 2020

On Friday morning, Hu Xijin, the editor in chief of the Chinese state-run Global Times media outlet, mocked President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump for testing positive for COVID-19, saying they “paid the price” president’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S.

Hu tweeted, “President Trump and the first lady have paid the price for his gamble to play down the COVID-19. The news shows the severity of the US’ pandemic situation. It will impose a negative impact on the image of Trump and the US, and may also negatively affect his reelection.”

Hu’s tweet came hours after President Trump tweeted he and the first lady would begin quarantining after receiving the positive COVID-19 test results.

President Trump tweeted, “Tonight, @FLOTUS and I tested positive for COVID-19. We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!”

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President Trump and other members of his administration have frequently criticized China for its handling of information about the coronavirus. Dr. Anthony Fauci, in April, said misinformation about the actual transmissibility of COVID-19 was propagated in China from the beginning of the outbreak. Fauci said China had likely observed human-to-human transmission of the virus as early as December, but denials of human-to-human transmission continued into January.

During a Sept. 22 speech at the United Nations, Trump said, “We must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world – China.”

During the first presidential debate on Tuesday night between Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump said the U.S. closed down “because of the China plague” and the coronavirus “should have never happened from China.”

China has previously mocked the U.S. response to the coronavirus, with a propaganda video praising China and the World Health Organization (WHO) for their responses to the coronavirus outbreak while suggesting the U.S. ignored repeated warnings about the virus.

In March, a Chinese government official spread claims, without evidence, that the virus was actually brought to the Chinese city of Wuhan by U.S. Army soldiers.

A U.S. State Department report assessed in April that China, Russia and Iran have all advanced similar coronavirus misinformation campaigns, aimed at shifting blame for the global coronavirus pandemic away from China and on to the U.S.