The Chinese ambassador to Australia, Cheng Jingye, has threatened this Monday to boycott the consumption of Australian products, including wine if Australian institutions insist on investigating the origin of the coronavirus pandemic that has already left more than 207,000 deaths in worldwide and has infected nearly three million people.
Cheng, who has warned of the consequences for the country of insisting on opening an investigation into the virus, said that “Chinese society is frustrated and disappointed by what Australia is doing.” “If this is going to get worse, people are going to consider whether it is worth going to a country that is not as friendly to China as it seems,” he said before warning that ” tourists may think twice.” Thus, during an interview with the local newspaper ‘The Australian Financial Review,’ he pointed out that everything depends on people. “They may wonder why they should drink Australian wine or eat its meat,” he said.
His words come after Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison came out in favour of opening an independent international investigation into the origin of the coronavirus in China and the initial response to the Asian giant’s health emergency.
For her part, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne has stated that this is not a time for threats but for “cooperation” worldwide, as reported by the newspaper ‘The Sydney Morning Herald’. In this sense, it has moved that the Government rejects “any suggestion of economic coercion, which it considers an inappropriate response when what is needed is global cooperation.” “Australia has called for an independent investigation into the COVID-19 outbreak, an unprecedented crisis that has severe consequences on health, the economy and society,” she said.
China and the WHO
Both China and the World Health Organization (WHO) are under great scrutiny by the international community for their management of the coronavirus pandemic, an example of this is the measures announced by the President of the United States, who in mid-April suspended the funds earmarked for the organization, which he has accused of “defending the actions of the Chinese government” and helping to “hide the danger and the extent of the outbreak.”
Countries such as France, Germany or the United Kingdom have already joined the doubts about the management of the crisis by China and have put on the table the possibility of carrying out a research of this magnitude. China, for its part, has rejected the criticism.