Missouri State’s Attorney General filed a lawsuit in an American court against China. Eric Schmitt accuses Beijing of withholding information about the new coronavirus, which he believes has harmed the population of the state.
The lawsuit says China is responsible for a pandemic that could have been prevented. Schmitt thinks that the Chinese authorities should have closed the country down sooner. He also accuses them of silencing informants who tried to warn of how to transfer the coronavirus from person to person.
For Missouri, as the lawsuit highlights, the situation has caused, among other things, economic damage by causing a sharp rise in unemployment.
China’s Foreign Ministry on Wednesday called the lawsuit filed in Missouri “a mock trial”. “The charges have no factual or real basis. Since the beginning of the outbreak, the Chinese government has informed the U.S. and other countries about the situation in the most open manner,” the Foreign Ministry spokesman said.
Several more private lawsuits have been filed against China in the United States. In addition, the ABC broadcasting company reported that three New Yorkers filed a complaint with the World Health Organization (WHO) in court. They accused her of collusion with Beijing in reporting the pandemic.
Earlier, US President Donald Trump announced a temporary suspension of WHO funding, accusing the organization of “management failures” due to the spread of coronavirus.
According to Trump, WHO overly trusted China and missed an opportunity to stop the pandemic at the beginning of its development. The World Health Organization later rejected these claims. The American president also warned China that there would be consequences if it was found to have deliberately allowed an outbreak to develop into a pandemic. Trump has repeatedly stressed that he does not trust official Chinese statistics on COVID-19 cases.
Doubts about Beijing’s actions in the early stages of the epidemic have been expressed by representatives of both leading US political parties. At the same time, the Democrats accuse the Republican president himself of diminishing the danger of the coronavirus and of failing to prepare the country sufficiently for the epidemic. The American administration is accused of insufficient testing of the population, lack of medical equipment. According to the number of cases and victims of COVID-19, the U.S. remains in first place in the world – almost 820 thousand infected and over 45 thousand dead.