China spins coronavirus crisis: Spain is one of the countries which is worst affected by the Coronavirus. Spain is in dire need of medical resources and equipment. Especially in those areas of Spain where the cases of infection of COVID-19 have been the most.
However, Spain’s efforts to assemble these essential medical resources came in the way of the Turkish government. As a result, the Turkish government took over the ships loaded with the consignments of hundreds of ventilators that Spain’s health trusts had purchased. The Spanish media, quoting his government, termed this Turkish act as ‘theft.’
After nearly a week of pullout, Spain finally managed to get the ship loaded with its medical equipment from the grip of Turkey. But, this incident is another example of how the Coronavirus is giving rise to diplomatic tension in all parts of the world.
Coronavirus is growing with which countries? Indeed, the diplomatic rhetoric between the US and China over the Coronavirus is being given more attention around the world. Especially when US President Donald Trump accused the World Health Organization of running at the behest of China, and the US is now considering stopping the funds being given to the World Health Organization.
But, this is not the only example of diplomatic tension due to the Coronavirus. Even though China has been accused of hiding the number of coronavirus patients, it is not necessary that every diplomatic struggle involving COVID-19 be from China.
Sophia Gaston of the London School of Economics’s Institute of Global Affairs told the BBC, “At the time of this pandemic, countries were expected to cooperate with each other as a common challenge, to counter the crisis.” It is appearing that all the countries are giving preference to their personal interests, and instead of cooperation, they are competing with each other. “
One example of this is the rift in the unity of European countries. When the incidence of COVID-19 infection increased rapidly in Italy, Italy appealed to its neighboring countries to help them in providing medical resources. However, Italy’s two big neighbors Germany and France, banned the export of such products from their own country.
“Of course these are not auspicious signs for European unity,” wrote Mauricio Masari, the Italian ambassador to Brussels, the European Union’s headquarters, on a website called Politico.
The people of Italy are unhappy with another German act. A proposal came that a fund should be raised by inflating funds to help the countries most affected by the coronavirus epidemic. However, Germany joined the countries opposing it.
Apart from Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, and Finland also openly opposed this proposal to raise funds to help COVID-19 affected countries. Whereas Spain, France, Belgium, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Slovenia, and Luxembourg supported the proposal.
Masks diplomacy of china Italy is also an example to understand the ‘mask diplomacy’ of China. After stopping the outbreak of the Coronavirus within its borders, now China is providing resources to many countries, which can prove to be helpful in preventing the outbreak of the virus. Russia is also getting such help from China.
Similarly, China has also provided medical equipment and testing kits to Italy. Simultaneously, China has also sent a team of its doctors to Italy, who is being seen as heroes in Italy. The #grazieCina or thank you China hashtag has been trending for a long time on social media in Italy.
Gesu Antonio Baez is the executive director of a consultancy firm named Pax Tecum. The London-based company provides services related to diplomatic and international development issues.
Baez says that China today is making a sly attempt to fill the diplomatic space vacated by the US during this global crisis. This situation has worsened because US President Donald Trump has been following the policy of ‘America First’ since coming to power in 2016.
Anyway, the attitude of America does not appear to be of cooperation with anyone. In addition to the struggle with China, the Trump government annoyed old ally Germany when they tried to gain the rights of the COVID-19 vaccine being developed by a German pharmaceutical company.
Recently, the US President also warned India that if it does not lift the ban on the export of the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, then the US will even reverse India because hydroxychloroquine is also being tested for treatment of COVID-19.
Says Baez, “America has not interfered as a diplomatic superpower during this global epidemic crisis. And that is why China has the opportunity to fill America’s vacant position in world diplomacy.”
However, the road to China’s ‘mask diplomacy’ is not so easy. One example of this is Brazil. Most countries of the world generally believe that China failed to stop the outbreak of this new Coronavirus in the right way at the right time. Sofia Gaston says that because of this, there is also resentment towards China in many countries.
Quarrel in China and Brazil on social media Sophia Gaston cites an American intelligence report that China is hiding cases of COVID-19 infection in itself. British officials have also questioned the number of cases of coronavirus infection in China.
Sophia Gaston says, “At the time China’s COVID-19 figures are being questioned, at that time China’s propaganda system is campaigning to improve the image of our country. Just like us in China, the actual figures of COVID-19 are not known yet, in the same way, anger towards China will increase in the world. “
Brazil has also questioned the Chinese way of dealing with the Coronavirus. Ever since this epidemic has spread, there has been a lot of conflict between Brazil and China.
Once the situation had reached such a level that the close officials of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and Chinese diplomatic officials were openly accusing each other on social media.
Its most recent incident came to light when Brazilian education minister Abraham Weintraub tweeted. Chinese officials were so angry with Abraham’s tweet that they dismissed it as racist. The Chinese embassy in Brazil tweeted, “Such statements are ridiculous and condemnable because they contain a racist view.”
China is Brazil’s largest trading partner. It can be understood that China is buying 80 percent of Brazil’s soy. However, Brazilian officials were struggling to obtain ventilators and other health equipment from China. During this time, the tweet of Education Minister Abraham Weintraub came, which added to the already ongoing tension.
Baez says, “It is clear from such examples that today the world needs diplomatic efforts more than ever. All countries need to communicate and eliminate the fear of each other.”
The tweet tweeted by the Chinese embassy in Brazil, in Portuguese, meant that “such statements are ridiculous and condemnable. They show clear racist thinking”.
However, the outbreak of this virus has further ignited the ongoing diplomatic struggle. Such as between Colombia and Venezuela, the two neighboring countries of Latin America.
The government of Colombia does not acknowledge the government of Nicolas Maduro, the President of Venezuela. Tensions are also increasing over the large number of migrants moving from Venezuela to Colombia.
A recent example of the tension between the two countries came to light on April 1, when Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro proposed to give Colombian President Ivan Duque two testing machines of the COVID-19. Earlier, there were reports in the media that the only mechanism to test in Colombia was damaged.
Nevertheless, the President of Colombia did not respond to Venezuela’s proposal. That made Venezuela Vice President, Delsey Rodriguez, very angry.
Delsea tweeted, “Ivan Dooku’s government has rejected President Maduro’s proposal to give two testing machines. In Rue, Colombian President Ivan Duque said that “the machines that Venezuela was giving us did not harmonize the chemical and other resources available to us.”
Talking about the Middle East, between Qatar and Egypt, there was an escalation of the future of the Egyptian citizens trapped in Qatar.
Qatar currently has the highest number of coronavirus patients in Middle-East countries. Qatar officials told the Al Jazeera channel that the Egyptian government had rejected their proposal, in which Qatar had proposed to send Egyptian civilians trapped in a particular aircraft to their country.
Egypt is one of the Arab countries that have severed all diplomatic relations with Qatar since 2017. These countries have accused Qatar of supporting terrorist organizations.
Apart from masks and lockdowns, there are many issues of debate- There is no tension between many countries of the world, only over masks and lockdowns. On March 18, a European Union report leaked to the media that media institutions operating under the influence of Russia are campaigning to spoil the image of Western countries with the Kovid-19 virus.
A spokesman for the Russian government called the allegations baseless. If the conflict between all the countries of the world is increasing, many reports are also praising the mutual harmony between some countries during the epidemic.
The researcher of the think tank named Overseas Development Institute, Analisa Prison, says that the crisis of the epidemic has also opened up new opportunities for mutual cooperation between countries.
She says, “One thing is proving from this crisis that developed countries are not always right. They are not experts in every issue.” “The way China has helped Italy with its experience of preventing the outbreak of the virus is another example of this,” says Annalisa.
However, Sophia Gaston still believes that more cooperation is needed to deal with this epidemic among all the countries of the world.
She says, “So far, all countries are missing opportunities to increase cooperation. Especially in Western countries, this is happening under pressure from nationalism and democratic movements.
While it is time to show the power of collaboration. But, its policies are being made in a place that is further deteriorating the already tense relationship of many countries. “