US Ambassador To UK: China’s ‘Secrets And Lies’ Produced Coronavirus Pandemic

Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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The United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom attacked China for its slow and secretive response to coronavirus Thursday, saying other countries wouldn’t have to be dealing with outbreaks if China had made the right decisions.

Ambassador Woody Johnson made the comments in an op-ed in The Times, adding that not only had China allowed the virus to spread, but it was now attempting to shift blame to the U.S.

“Had China done the right things at the right time, more of its own population, and the rest of the world, might have been spared the most serious impact of this disease,” he wrote.

US Ambassador to the United Kingdom Woody Johnson (L) walks with US President Donald Trump (C) and US First Lady Melania Trump to the US ambassador's residence Winfield House in London on July 12, 2018. - The four-day trip, which will include talks with Prime Minister Theresa May, tea with Queen Elizabeth II and a private weekend in Scotland, is set to be greeted by a leftist-organised mass protest in London on Friday. (Photo credit: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

US Ambassador to the United Kingdom Woody Johnson (L) walks with US President Donald Trump (C) and US First Lady Melania Trump (Photo credit: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

Johnson’s comments echo those of President Donald Trump, who recently described China’s early action on the coronavirus pandemic in Wuhan as “secretive.” (RELATED: NY Health Commissioner Tells People Not To Follow White House Coronavirus Guidance)

“I have a tremendous relationship with President Xi. I wish they could have told us earlier,” Trump said last week. “China was very secretive, and that’s unfortunate.”

The administration has also hit China for spreading misinformation that U.S. soldiers were responsible for starting the outbreak in Wuhan. China has fostered the conspiracy theories by censoring detractors. (RELATED: Germany Bans Meetings Of More Than Two People)

“It is bad enough when conspiracy-theory cranks spread dangerous misinformation around the world. It is far worse, and more dangerous, when malign misinformation is spread by a government’s officials, And that is exactly what the People’s Republic of China has been doing, spreading false accusations about the origin and spread of the coronavirus,” Johnson wrote.

Some have suggested the international community should hold China responsible for the virus and require some form of compensation, but Trump has not made a public statement on the issue.