Germany tells China attempted to encourage positive COVID-19 comments

Chinese diplomats approached German government officials in an effort to promote them to make positive comments on how Beijing is managing the coronavirus pandemic, the German interior ministry announced in a letter this month.attempted

“The German government is aware of individual contacts made by Chinese diplomats with the aim of effecting positive public statements on the coronavirus management by the People’s Republic of China,” stated the letter which was seen by Reuters agency.

“The federal government has not complied with these requests.”

The letter was dated April 22 and was sent to Green Party member of parliament Margarete Bause in response to her question on whether Chinese diplomats had contacted German officials with the goal of encouraging them to make positive remarks.

The comments by the interior ministry were first reported by the Welt am Sonntag newspaper, which cited the Chinese embassy in Berlin as rejecting the report as untrue and irresponsible.

The embassy could not immediately be reached for comment on Sunday.

China actively participates in international counter-epidemic cooperation efforts, in line with its sense of responsibility towards its own people and global public health, the Chinese foreign ministry said on Monday in response to a Reuters request for comment.

“It is about justice, and there is no need to seek praise,” the ministry said.

In the letter, the interior ministry said the government had acknowledged China’s efforts to contain the pandemic, particularly since Jan. 23, even without being asked to do so by Beijing.

It went on to say that Berlin had told the Chinese government that it believed transparency was important for combating the pandemic, without saying whether it believed the Chinese government had been transparent or not.

The ministry did not give a time frame for the contacts.

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