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China to provide support to countries with weaker health systems: FM spokesperson

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By quoting WHO Director-General Tedros, foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said China’s effective measures have contained the spread of the virus inside China and to other countries, providing time for the world to prepare for the epidemic.

BEIJING, Feb. 25 (Xinhua) — China will provide support within its capacity to countries with weaker health systems to help them strengthen their epidemic prevention and control capabilities, a foreign ministry spokesperson said Tuesday.

Spokesperson Zhao Lijian made the remarks when asked to comment on a statement from World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus’s video address to the meeting of health ministers of African Union (AU) member states Saturday.

Tedros said the WHO is still concerned about the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in countries with weaker health systems and called on the international community to support the most ill-prepared countries.

The World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (R) attends a daily briefing in Geneva, Switzerland, Feb. 24, 2020. (Xinhua/Chen Junxia)

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, the Chinese government and people have taken the most comprehensive, stringent and thorough prevention and control measures, which have achieved remarkable effects as proven by facts, Zhao said.

By quoting Tedros, Zhao said China’s effective measures have contained the spread of the virus inside China and to other countries, providing time for the world to prepare for the epidemic.

African countries have provided precious support and assistance to China the first time after the epidemic despite their limited conditions, the spokesperson said.

Noting that the 36th Ordinary Session of the AU Executive Council and the AU Peace and Security Council Meeting have issued communiques in support of China’s efforts to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus, Zhao said the meeting of health ministers of AU member states also highly praised China’s anti-epidemic measures.

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Participants attend the 36th ordinary session of the executive council of the African Union Commission which in Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia, Feb. 6, 2020. (Xinhua/Michael Tewelde)

“Africa stands with China in times of adversity. This is a perfect demonstration of a community with a shared future for mankind,” Zhao said.

As cherished by traditional Chinese culture, “a drop of water in need, shall be returned with a spring indeed,” China will keep this friendship and assistance in mind, he said.

China will continue to implement the results of the Belt and Road construction and the outcomes of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation Beijing Summit, provide support within its capacity to countries with weaker health systems to help them strengthen their epidemic prevention and control capabilities, and safeguard regional and global public health security, said the spokesperson. 

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