The stinging rebuke was written by the Chinese journalist Li Qingqing from the state-owned Global Times in an editorial opinion piece. It came in response to US allegations that Chinese government hackers were trying to steal coronavirus research data from US pharmaceutical companies. On Tuesday, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) warned company executives that Beijing was using “cyber actors and non-traditional collectors” to access intellectual property and health data related to coronavirus vaccines and treatments.
The security agencies advised the companies to beef up their cyber security, as well as scanning web applications for unauthorised access, modifications or anomalous activities.
However, The Global Times, often seen as a mouth piece for the Chinese Communist Party, furiously dismissed these allegations saying the US lacked “substantial evidence to support the accusation.”
In the editorial, Mr Qingqing claimed that the US President was desperate to deflect blame for his own incompetent handling of the health crisis in the US.
He wrote: “The despicable war of words is a publicity stunt by certain crank politicians.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is still raging across the world, especially in the US.
“If any country dares to hack other countries’ labs and steal research results into vaccines, it would be an act against all humanity.
“Making up such rumours is convenient for the US government, so that US politicians can dodge their own culpability and failures, and instead allegedly hold China accountable for COVID-19 spread in the US.”
He then turned the tables on the US, suggesting that the Trump administration would try to steal coronavirus research data from Chinese companies.
Last week, the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said there was “enormous evidence” that the coronavirus originated from the Wuhan laboratory.
Mr Pompeo also said that this was not the first time that Chinese lab failures had allowed a deadly virus to escape and endanger the world.
The Secretary of State told ABC news: “There’s enormous evidence that that’s where this began.
“We’ve said from the beginning that this was a virus that originated in Wuhan, China.
“We took a lot of grief for that from the outset.
“But I think the whole world can see now. Remember, China has a history of infecting the world, and they have a history of running substandard laboratories.”
He added: “These are not the first times that we’ve had a world exposed to viruses as a result of failures in a Chinese lab.”
However, the US Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said that it regarded the coronavirus as a natural phenomenon.
The agency said in a statement: “The Intelligence Community … concurs with the wide scientific consensus that the COVID-19 virus was not manmade or genetically modified.”
Published at Thu, 14 May 2020 00:17:00 +0000