During the press conference on March 4, Zhao Lijian the spokesman of China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs claimed that the COVID-19 may have not originated in China.

Lijian criticized the media for calling Coronovirus as Chinavirus, commenting that it is ‘extremely irresponsible’ and that China strongly opposes it. 

He emphasized that Beijing is still tracking down the origin of the coronavirus for it is still undetermined. Lijian pointed out that the WHO has always referred to COVID-19 as a global phenomenon with uncertain origins and the reason for its name to be changed from 2019-nCOV to COVID-19 is to avoid negative repercussions from stigmatizing a geographic area or a population group. Lijian quoted Dr. Zhong Nanshan, the respiratory specialist saying that coronavirus first emerged in China but was not necessarily originated in China. 

He further asserted that there has been no supporting evidence so far for such a statement. Lijian reaffirmed that coordinated efforts are needed to address this global challenge rather than spreading rumors and prejudice.

Yet, when it comes to tracing the origin of the epidemic, Beijing has never allowed WHO health workers to enter Wuhan, the epicenter of the novel virus to study the origin of the virus and its speedy spread in a further effort to contain the disease in China and worldwide.

China has several times refused the U.S.’s assistance in its efforts to contain the fast-speed spread of the plague. 

Beijing has also been broadly rebuked for information censorship, which is believed to hinder the effort to combat the disease in China itself and all nations.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo earlier stated, “Had China permitted its own and foreign journalists and medical personnel to speak and investigate freely, Chinese officials and other nations would have been far better prepared to address the challenge.”, reported ABC News.

The recent statement of the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs also met with immense censure.

Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) expressed his discontent on Twitter, calling it a lie.

User Christy echoed the senator’s comment.