By K J M Varma
Beijing, Feb 14 (PTI) China on Friday rejected US allegations that it is not transparent enough in sharing the details about the coronavirus outbreak, saying it was working with the international community in an "open and highly responsible manner" to contain the global crisis.
China's comments came after Larry Kudlow, the director of President Donald Trump's Economic Council, said that the US is little disappointed over not being invited in the medical operations and the lack of transparency coming from the Chinese over coronavirus outbreak.
Stressing that unanswered questions were mounting and there was no sign of the promised cooperation, Kudlow said: "We're more than willing to work with the WHO on this(coronavirus) and they won't let us".
"I don't know what their motives are. I do know that apparently, more and more people are suffering over there," Kudlow said in Washington.
The death toll in China's novel coronavirus outbreak has spiked to nearly 1,500 with 121 new fatalities reported mostly from the worst-affected Hubei province while the confirmed cases of infection jumped to nearly 65,000, health officials said on Friday.
State-run CGTN reported that 505 cases of the virus were abroad, including 15 cases of the virus in the US.
Ever since the coronavirus outbreak that shook China and the world, Beijing has not acceded to requests by the US to permit American specialists to visit the country to take part in the medical operations to counter the virus.
Instead, China has permitted a team of the World Health Organisation (WHO) specialists to visit the country and assist it to contain the virus.
While a 15 member WHO advance team has arrived on Monday, the rest expected to reach here soon.
However, China's Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said that China has been working with the international community to tackle the epidemic in an open, transparent and highly responsible manner.
“China has been working with the international community to tackle the epidemic in an open, transparent and highly responsible manner for the sake of global public health security and all people's health," Geng was quoted as saying during an online media briefing here by the AFP.
He also said that China has been active and open towards cooperation with the US.
"China has been active and open towards cooperation with the US. Since the epidemic began, the health authorities of the two sides have been in close communication on policies, timely exchanging information on the epidemic, with the heads of the departments having talks through phone calls and messages," he said.
Geng stated that the Chinese and American departments of disease control, medical R&D and technology as well as scientists have also been engaging in various forms of exchanges.
"We welcome foreign experts’ participation in the China-WHO Joint Mission, including those from the US. US President Trump and Secretary of Health Alex Azar commended China’s transparent handling of the epidemic on many occasions," he said.
“China will continue working with the international community, including the US, to jointly tackle the epidemic and uphold global health security," he added.
Contrary to Kudlow’s remarks US President Trump is reported to have praised China’s response.
"I think they've handled it professionally and I think they're extremely capable and I think President Xi is extremely capable," he said.
"We're working with them. We're sending a lot of people," Trump is quoted as saying by the international media. PTI KJV RUP RUP