China refutes Pompeo's anti-China statements over China-Africa ties

BEIJING, June 29 (Xinhua) -- China on Monday expressed strong opposition to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's statements over China-Africa relations, saying that the statements ignored the fundamental facts and smeared China arbitrarily, according to a Foreign Ministry spokesperson.

Spokesperson Zhao Lijian made the remarks at a news briefing when asked for comment to Pompeo's statements, in which he blamed China-Africa cooperation and China's transparency in handling COVID-19.

Since COVID-19 broke out, China has always acted in an open, transparent and responsible manner and provided timely information to the World Health Organization and relevant countries and regions including the United States, Zhao said.

China also shared the genome sequence of the virus, actively responded to the concerns of others, and strengthened cooperation with all sides, the spokesperson said, adding China has bought time and made positive contributions to the global fight against the virus.

Zhao said China will work with the international community to step up support for African countries and earnestly act on the G20 Debt Service Suspension Initiative.

"Some African countries have applied for such suspension with China. And we are now working on the specific details through close coordination and consultation to ease their debt burden and help them tide over the difficulties," Zhao said.

"We hope that the United States will focus on its own epidemic response and also contribute to the global fight against the virus through concrete deeds, instead of undermining and smearing other countries' response and spreading the 'political virus,'" he said.

The African countries and the international community at large have no difficulty in telling who is genuinely helping Africa and who is politicizing the debt issue, Zhao added.