COVID-19 and false politics
by Muhammad Asif Noor
Editor's Note: Muhammad Asif Noor is Director of the Institute of Peace and Diplomatic Studies (IPDS). The article reflects the author's opinions and not necessarily the views of Gwadar Pro.
Recently, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has proposed a second-phase plan to investigate the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic in China even as the country has fully cooperated with utmost honesty with the WHO officials in WHO’s first-phase investigation into the origins of the virus. Of course, the plan was rightly and unapologetically rejected by the Chinese authorities for its significantly politicalised nature. The plan also falls short on both common sense and logic.
The second phase of WHO’s plans to trace the origins of the virus should be based on the evidence collected in the first phase and in accordance with the scientific principles and rules. In this sense, the logical next step will be to expand the investigations to other countries including the US instead of focusing solely on China as urged by the Chinese Vice Minister of the National Health Commission (NHC) and senior scientists. This is how the objective truth and reality will be discovered.
Since the virus alarm was raised by the Wuhan authorities at the end of 2019, China has been communicating with WHO and the world about the virus, and against all odds, the Chinese people fought with bravery and strength to put all efforts to fight back and control the virus while keeping their spirits high as the hard-hit front-line country to face such a huge calamity.
After winning the battle at home, China provided medical supplies for the countries in dire need, among which Pakistan was one of the first few countries to receive Chinese medical supplies including vaccines. Over 600 million doses of Chinese vaccines have been offered to more than 200 countries across the globe to help save lives and fight pandemic globally. The arduous fight against COVID-19 by China is outstanding with worth to stand the test of history. Through health diplomacy, China has proved to be friends of those in need.
In addition to fighting against the deadly virus nationally and globally, China has been cooperating with the global health watchdogs in a transparent manner including WHO. The Chinese authorities invited the WHO delegation to investigate the origins of the virus in Wuhan, where the delegation and other officials have been greeted with cooperative Chinese teams and workers to find out through professional, scientific, responsible and unbiased manner the origins of the virus. Based on facts and the work that has already been done in the first phase, the investigation should not be repeated in this second phase. There has been a clear conclusion especially after the finalisation of the WHO-China joint report on the findings.
Despite all these honest contributions, China has still been trapped in the suspicions and conspiracies of a bunch of countries. The superfluous politicisation and controversial statements made by the top leadership from the US and the western world will result only in failure and frustration among the global community suffering badly with the rampage of the virus on its current “Delta variant” stage. Politicisation and negative propaganda on the COVID-19 pandemic and its origin without relying on objective truth revealed by science is far more lethal and infectious than the virus itself. The ongoing tense and slander campaign against China at the global scale is despicable and distressing to the core.
As a sovereign country, China has all the due rights to question the conduct of other countries at the same time. Nearly 10 million people have signed the petition to ask WHO to investigate lab leaks in the US as Americans and their allies have a history of making the world believe in the Iraq war where no evidence was found. The COVID-19 pandemic is a greater challenge to humanity and requires global responsibility to share this trial together.
History will remember these conducts and humanity will never forgive negligence in helping the world come out of this deadliest virus onslaughts. Truth will be revealed sooner or later and is coming out especially on the global mishandling of virus in their own countries.