The US President Donald Trump reiterated that he will make China pay for the damages caused by coronavirus. Trump, upon his return from the hospital where he was admitted after he tested positive for the virus, said everything has been China’s fault.
Trump made the remark in a statement at the White House where he also claimed that his infection was “a blessing from God.”
“It wasn’t your fault that this happened, it was China’s fault, and China is going to pay a big price [for] what they’ve done to this country. China’s going to pay a big price, what they’ve done to the world. This was China’s fault.
“I feel like perfect, so I think this was a blessing from God that I caught it. This was a blessing in disguise,” he said.
COVID-19 has been the biggest challenge of Trump’s administration, and how he handles the pandemic has been criticized and fingered as the reason the United States leads in the number of infections and deaths.
Data from John Hopkins University shows that the US has 8,106,752 cases and 219,289 deaths so far; staggering numbers that put it ahead of every other country in the world.
Trump was declared ‘fit to go home’ after he was treated with experimental antibody therapy known as REGN-COV2 developed by American biotechnology company Regeneron. He also received the antibody cocktail before he was admitted to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. While in admission, Trump was also given multiple doses of the antiviral drug, Remdesivir and a steroid dexamethasone.
The president also said he would push for speedy delivery of the vaccines, and will pressure the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to issue an emergency use authorization to administer the medication to COVID-19 patients. It is a move experts have described as “shocking.”
Aruna Subramanian, an infectious disease specialist at Stanford University, said although Renegeron seems promising, it is still on trial.
“He really praised the Regeneron monoclonal antibodies today. We’re still doing trials on them,” Subramanian said in an interview.
“They seem pretty safe, and they may be efficacious, but we don’t know in whom, and for what kinds of symptoms. So to somehow tout this as a cure and say that the FDA should push it through, everybody should get it – it was very, very shocking.”
Trump earlier touted hydroxychloroquine for treatment as the number of infected persons surged in US cities, despite experts’ warning that the drug has insignificant impact on patients during trials.
Following the surge of COVID-19 cases in the US, which has impacted both the US election and economy, Trump has been desperately looking for a way out as the rising numbers stand in the way of his reelection bid. But on the other side of his desperation also is an attempt to excuse his shortfalls in handling the pandemic, and blame it on China.
Trump has labeled the disease “China virus” as part of his effort to hold China responsible for the damages of the pandemic. But Trump isn’t the only one who has called for China to be held accountable for the pandemic.
Earlier in the year, Nigeria’s former Education Minister, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili made the case for the south Asian giant to compensate Africa for the economic damages the pandemic has brought on the continent.
The idea that China must be held accountable has been shared across countries, fueled by the belief that coronavirus must have been manufactured in a lab in Chinese city Hunan. The disease was first reported in Wuhan in December, with most cases linked to a seafood wholesale market.
While the belief that coronavirus was made in a Chinese lab remains a mere suspicion, as the World Health Organization’s investigators could not establish the link between the virus’ origin and Chinese labs, Trump appears to be on a vendetta to make China pay. After all, the virus came first from China, and it has severely dented his chances of getting reelected.