China refutes U.S. accusation of "xenophobia" in treatment of Africans

Senior officials from Zimbabwe's Ministry of Health and Harare City Council participate in the China-Africa Video Conference on COVID-19 in Harare, Zimbabwe, March 18, 2020. Africans have hailed China's efforts and measures taken to curb the COVID-19 outbreak, expressing their keen interest to learn its experience as the African continent reported more and more confirmed cases. (Xinhua/Zhang Yuliang)

BEIJING, April 13 (Xinhua) -- China on Monday refuted the U.S. accusation that the Chinese province of Guangdong has taken discriminatory practices toward Africans in the process of epidemic prevention and control, and said the United States was provoking confrontation, which was not only immoral but also irresponsible.

Spokesperson Zhao Lijian made the remarks at a news briefing when answering a question regarding the accusation from a U.S. State Department spokesperson.

Zhao said China urges the U.S. side to focus on its own pandemic prevention and control. Attempts to provoke confrontation amid China-Africa friendly relations will never succeed.

"During our fight against coronavirus, the Chinese government has been attaching great importance to the lives and health of foreign nationals in China. All foreigners are treated equally, and we reject differential treatment," said Zhao.

China and Africa have always been good friends, good partners and good brothers, said Zhao, adding that African countries had supported China during China's most difficult times fighting the epidemic.

As the situation is getting more severe in Africa, the Chinese government and people have swiftly delivered aid to Africa, which has been highly acclaimed by African countries and their people.

"China's friendly policy toward Africa will never change, our friendship with African countries and their people will never waver, and we will never discriminate against our African brothers," said the spokesperson.

He noted that of the more than 3,000 African students in Hubei Province, only one was infected when the coronavirus epidemic was at its severest time, but this student received prompt treatment and recovered quickly. All the others are in sound conditions.

The Guangdong authorities have carried out investigations and implemented a series of new methods regarding some African countries' concerns, Zhao said, adding that he believed the issue will be properly handled with the joint efforts of the two sides.

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