LI MIN/CHINA DAILY
China and Caribbean countries are showing that solidarity and cooperation are the means to ensure virus is defeated
A special vice-ministerial video meeting on COVID-19 was held on May 12, with representatives from China and nine Caribbean countries, including The Bahamas, attending the meeting. The participants held in-depth exchanges over issues related to their domestic epidemic situations and responses, China-Caribbean cooperation in fighting against the pandemic, and the two sides' coordination and cooperation in related international affairs.
The meeting reached a broad consensus and issued a joint news release. All participants expressed readiness to enhance cooperation in pandemic prevention and control and jointly uphold global health security, firmly rejected the politicizing of the pandemic, and any stigmatizing and labeling practices under the pretext of the pandemic, and expressed their support for the World Health Organization's leading role in the international cooperation to fight against the pandemic. At a crucial juncture in the global fight against the novel coronavirus, this meeting was of great significance.
The rapid spread of the virus has brought serious challenges to China, the Caribbean countries and countries all over the world. Hundreds of thousands of people worldwide have lost their lives. The world's economic and social development has been impacted heavily.
Since the outbreak began, the Chinese government has acted with a strong sense of responsibility to the world and put in place the most comprehensive and strictest measures to prevent and contain the pandemic. China has achieved major strategic results in containing the domestic spread of the virus. At present, China is stepping up its pandemic prevention and control measures to prevent imported infections and a rebound of the epidemic at home. At the same time, it is also speeding up the orderly resumption of work and production, to restore normal production and daily life as soon as possible. While fighting against the virus with great resolve, China has shared its control and clinical experience with the WHO and the international community without reservation and in an open, transparent and responsible manner.
China has been doing all it can to provide assistance and has actively engaged in international cooperation with the aim of protecting the lives and health of the Chinese people and people all over the world.
In the fight against the novel coronavirus, China and the Caribbean countries have been supporting and assisting each other, adding a new chapter to China-Caribbean friendship. In the most difficult time of China's fight against the pandemic, many Caribbean countries expressed their sympathy and support to China. China has organized two video conferences to share relevant information and experience, and provided material and technical assistance to the Caribbean countries. So far China has provided three batches of medical supplies to The Bahamas.
China will continue to firmly support the Caribbean countries in their fight against the virus, and stands ready to further help Caribbean countries, including The Bahamas, as its ability permits. Meanwhile, China will actively expand practical cooperation with all countries in trade, investment and other fields, and strengthen communication and coordination in international and regional organizations, to jointly elevate bilateral relations to a new level.
Since mid-March, the government of The Bahamas has taken strict containment measures, which have yielded obvious positive outcomes. We believe that with the joint efforts of the government and people, The Bahamas will defeat the pandemic and restore normal production and the resumption of daily life.
But while the virus has been contained to a certain extent in China and some Caribbean countries, it continues to spread in many regions of the world. The coronavirus knows no borders, and is the common enemy of all mankind.
Recently, some politicians tried to politicize the pandemic, label the virus and attack and smear China to shift the blame for their own inadequate response. Such moves are not helpful at either the national or global levels.
The outbreak is a fresh reminder that we will rise and fall together, and must therefore look out for each other and marshal a collective response to global challenges. I am confident that with the joint efforts of the international community, we will be able to tide over the difficulties, defeat the virus at an early date, and protect the health and safety of the people around the world.
The author is the Chinese ambassador to the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. The author contributed this article to China Watch, a think tank powered by China Daily. The views do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily.