“Those play with fire will get burnt,” warns the Chinese Communist Party’s spokesman regarding US Secretary of Health Alex Azar’s recent visit to Taiwan.
China Daily: US Health and Human Service Secretary Alex Azar said in a speech at National Taiwan University on August 11: “The Chinese Communist Party had the chance to warn the world and work with the world on battling the virus. But they chose not to…the People’s Republic of China did not live up to the binding obligations it had under the International Health Regulations, betraying the cooperative spirit we need for global health…if this virus had emerged in a place like Taiwan or the United States, it might have been snuffed out easily”. I wonder if China has any comment on this.
Zhao Lijian: We must repeat this solemn message to the US side again that China firmly opposes official exchanges between the US and Taiwan under whatever pretext. On issues concerning China’s core interests, certain individuals in the US should not have any illusions or imagine they can get away with inappropriate behaviors. Those playing with fire will end up burning themselves badly.
We also remind the DPP authority in Taiwan to stop pursuing its misguided course. A dead end will meet them if they so willingly choose to act like self-important puppets with strings in foreign hands and seriously believe that they have a chance at independence by taking advantage of the epidemic.
With regard to COVID-19, we’ve released the timeline showing clearly China’s effective response. Since the very beginning of the outbreak, China has been acting in an open, transparent, and responsible manner and earnestly fulfilling its duties and obligations under the International Health Regulations. With the most comprehensive, stringent, and thorough measures, we contained the spread of the virus while engaging in international cooperation in prevention and control. Putting people and life front and center, the Chinese government’s epidemic response can stand the test of time and history. China’s tremendous sacrifice for and contribution to the global fight has been witnessed by all.
Turning to the US, confirmed cases passed five million and deaths 160,000. In the face of such a grave situation, the principal health official, instead of manning the front-line and devoting himself entirely to bringing the virus under control, has walked out on the millions of people suffering at home, all for a political posturing faraway in Taiwan. I wonder if this official knew that during his three-day visit, more than 150,000 new cases were confirmed in the US and over 2,000 lives lost. Their ridiculous stunts this time just make us more convinced that for them, American people’s lives are nothing compared with political gains.
Secretary Azar, I’m afraid, is directly responsible for the unchecked spreading of the epidemic in the US. We wonder where he got the confidence and courage to criticize China’s anti-epidemic efforts with blushing or squirming? If he entered a competition on who managed this epidemic worst, he will almost surely come out top. He lashed out against China because he wanted China to be his scapegoat and cover up for their competence. Stop putting on these political shows and focus on saving American lives, as a secretary of health should do. Azar claimed that if this virus had emerged in a place like the United States, it might have been snuffed out easily. We can’t wait to see him working his wonders and bring the epidemic situation at home under control as soon as possible.
Secretary Azar becomes highest-level US official to visit Taiwan in decades
US health secretary Alex Azar meets with Taiwan President
U.S. Secretary of Health Alex Azar met President Tsai Ing-wen at the Presidential Office on Monday. It was Azar”s first public event in Taiwan since landing the day before, as the highest-ranking American to visit in 40 years. Azar said his visit conveyed a message of strong support for Taiwan from U.S. President Donald Trump. Tsai thanked Azar for recognizing Taiwan”s contributions to global health.
President Tsai Ing-wen:
“I would like to take this opportunity to express our thanks to President Trump, Secretary Pompeo, Secretary Azar and many other good friends in the U.S. We are grateful for their continued recognition of the Taiwan model’s contribution to global anti-pandemic efforts as well as their strong support for Taiwan’s international participation.
“Secretary of State Pompeo said that the U.S. has wanted Taiwan to be part of the conversations at the World Health Assembly but that China has prevented that from happening. We also believe that this situation is highly regrettable. Throughout this pandemic, Taiwan has demonstrated that it is not only able to hold the line of its own defenses but can also assist and coordinate other countries in the fight against the disease. I would like to reiterate that political considerations should never take precedence over the rights to health. The decision to bar Taiwan from participating in the WHO is a violation of the universal rights to health.”
US health secretary Alex Azar:
“It’s a true honor to be here to convey a message of strong support and friendship from President Trump to Taiwan.
“The particular focus of both my discussions with President Tsai and of our trip is highlighting Taiwan’s success in health, in combating COVID-19 and cooperating with the United States to prevent, detect and respond to health threats. Taiwan’s response to COVID-19 has been among the most successful in the world.”
Azar’s visit is seen as a testament to warm Taiwan-U.S. relations. The health secretary is the highest-ranking American official to visit since Washington severed ties with Taiwan in 1979.
US health secretary Alex Azar meets with Taiwan’s foreign minister Joseph Wu
U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar on Tuesday met with Taiwan’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu. Before they spoke behind closed doors, each read a statement in front of the press. Azar sharply condemned China for working to exclude Taiwan from global organizations. Wu said Taiwan must win its battles against Beijing so that “democracy prevails.”
Alex Azar pays tribute to late President Lee Teng-hui at Taipei Guest House
On the last day of his historic visit, U.S. health secretary Alex Azar paid his respects to the late President Lee Teng-hui, who died in July aged 97. He lauded Lee”s democratic legacy as the driver of progress in Taiwan-U.S. relations. After visiting the memorial, Azar toured a New Taipei factory that produces face masks. He left Taipei in the afternoon on a U.S. Air Force C-40B aircraft for the United States.