Chargé d'Affaires Luo Songtao Publishes a Signed Article Entitled "Dominica is China's true friend in the fight against Novel Coronavirus"

On February 11, Mr. Luo Songtao, Chargé d'Affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Dominica published a signed article entitled "Dominica is China's true friend in the fight against Novel Coronavirus", to brief the epidemic situation and the efforts made by the Chinese government, to thank the Dominican government and people for their support to China, and to express China's full determination, confidence and capability to win the battle against the outbreak.

Following is the full text of Mr. LUO's article:

Currently, China is making all-out efforts to fight the novel coronavirus outbreak. Under the direct leadership of President Xi Jinping, China has put in place a nationwide prevention and control mechanism and taken the most comprehensive and rigorous measures to contain and mitigate the outbreak, many of them go well beyond the requirements of the International Health Regulations. All of China is in action, sparing no effort to save lives and curb the spread of virus. A total of 66.74 billion RMB yuan (about 9.6 billion US dollars) were earmarked as special funds for epidemic prevention and control. About 11,921 Medical personnels from other provinces have arrived in Hubei province. Two new hospitals together with 2600 beds are built in 10 days and put into use in Wuhan, capital of Hubei province and epicenter of the outbreak. China also postponed the start of schools and businesses and suspended the group tours abroad by travel agencies. By doing so, China is not only protecting the health of its people, but also that of people around the world. 

The situation remains challenging with remaining 37,626 confirmed cases and 21,675 suspected cases by 10 Feb. But with China's institutional advantages and previous useful experience, and with the strong scientific, technological and material foundation accumulated over the past 70 years, we have full determination, confidence and capability to win this fight against the epidemic. The measures taken by China are showing positive effects. Since 4 Feb, the number of newly reported confirmed cases excluding Hubei has been declining for seven days running(731, 707, 696, 558,509,444 and 381 respectively)or 50% fall in one week. As of 10 Feb, a total of 3,996 people have been cured and discharged from hospital, far exceeding the mortality of 1016. With strict measures controlling the movement of people, the momentum of the spread of virus is being curbed. All these encouraging developments show that the epidemic is preventable, controllable and curable.

China has also been conducting international cooperation in an open, transparent and responsible manner. We have released information to WHO and relevant countries, identified the pathogen and shared genetic sequence of the virus in a record-short time. President Xi Jinping met WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros and invited WHO experts to conduct field visits in Wuhan. Foreign Minister Wang Yi had telephone conversations with his foreign counterparts, keeping close communication on the situation. I myself called on Dr. Hon. Kenneth Darroux, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Hon. Dr. Irving McIntyre, Minister of Health on 3 Feb to establish a contact group between the Chinese Embassy and the Ministry of Health to enhance coordination. We attach great importance to the safety of foreign nationals including Dominicans in China as much as about our own citizens, work hard to address their difficulties and ensure their safety. 

A friend in need is a friend indeed. Under current circumstances, solidarity is what the world needs, as the WHO Director-General Tedros said, "the only way we defeat this outbreak is for all countries to work together in a spirit of solidarity and cooperation. The UN Secretary General and WHO Director-General and Leaders of many countries have applauded China's forceful measures and expressed confidence in the ability of the Chinese government to prevail over the epidemic. Dominica has again proved to be a true friend of China. In the wake of the unexpected outbreak of the novel coronavirus, President Charles Savarin spoke highly of China's actions in a parliament address and Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit sent a letter to Chinese Premier Li Keqiang to express full support and solidarity with China on behalf of the Dominican Government and people.The Opposition leadership also called Chinese Embassy to express confidence on China's efforts to control the epidemic. We appreciate the Dominica government adopted a responsible attitude and respected the professional recommendations of WHO which made it clear about its opposition to travel or trade restrictions against China. My gratitude also goes to all Dominican people especially the Dominican students who remain in China for standing with the Chinese people in this difficult times .

As Foreign Minister Dr. Hon. Kenneth Darroux said, "We (Dominica and China) are NOT fair-weather friends". I cannot agree more. Absolutely, we are all-weather friends. We call on other countries to follow the example of Dominica to evaluate the outbreak in an objective and rational manner, support for and work together with China to jointly combat our common enemy and to safeguard global public health security.

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