Amid Trump's latest Huawei sanctions and his controversially taking aim at WeChat and TikTok for "security threats" posed by the Chinese apps, also as Washington becomes isolated in the UN over its push to impose snapback sanctions on Iran, Chinese President Xi Jinping has gone on the offensive in new comments Tuesday, saying America acts as if it's "the boss of the world". In his UN address Xi urged we should oppose protectionism and insist on openness and benefit-for-all. President Xi said during his remarks following Trump: “Pursuing protectionism is like locking oneself in a dark room. While wind and rain may be kept outside, that dark room will also block light and air.”
Trump came out swinging more directly at Beijing in his speech which wrapped up, calling on the international body to "hold China accountable for their actions" over the still globally raging coronavirus pandemic.
Trump said China's COVID-19 deceptions included "allowing flights to leave China and infect the world...". He added that "China condemned my travel ban on their country even as they canceled domestic flights and locked citizens in their homes."
Trump is using his UN speech to rail against China pic.twitter.com/3CcJpyMKSa— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 22, 2020
“The Chinese government, and the World Health Organization – which is virtually controlled by China – falsely declared that there was no evidence of human-to-human transmission,” Trump said further.
"Later, they falsely said people without symptoms would not spread the disease..." he said, going through a list of China's egregious behavior and its impact on the world.
Trump used his UN speech to attack China and claim that the U.S. is leading on environmental causes pic.twitter.com/mrleU2iOsp— NowThis (@nowthisnews) September 22, 2020
Though Xi in his prior pre-speech comments didn't specifically name the United States or any particular country, it was clear to his listeners at a meeting in China celebrating the United Nation's 75th anniversary just who the thinly veiled words were directed at. The pre-UN Assembly address gave a glimpse of what Xi will say to the world in his main address following Trump.
As originally reported in Xinhua News Agency he said that no nation should “be allowed to do whatever it likes and be the hegemon, bully or boss of the world.”
Emphasizing hope for a revival of multilateralism, he called for “more balanced” international relations and decision-making where countries must not be “lorded over by those who wave a strong fist at others.”
“There must be no practice of exceptionalism or double standards,” Xi said. “Nor should international law be distorted and used as a pretext to undermine other countries’ legitimate rights and interests or world peace and stability.”
Xi echoed these prior statements and gave similar emphasis in his remote speech to the UN General Assembly soon after Trump's speech Tuesday.
He said "the global virus fight shouldn't be politicized."
Also with the Iran unilateral US sanctions issue still front and center, the showdown is expected to be intense, given Pompeo has lately said the US is all too willing to go it completely alone in enforcing sanctions on those will to trade or send weapons to Iran (when the arms embargo expires Oct.18).
The world needs to unite around the central idea that the Islamic Republic of Iran is the greatest threat, and when that regime changes its behavior, we have the chance to create true global stability in the region. It’s what President @realDonaldTrump asked us to do. pic.twitter.com/KflMbJICpR— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) September 21, 2020
The US-China back and forth accusations will perhaps take away from the 75th anniversary commemorative nature of the assembly as well, but given the pandemic has forced the whole thing go online, this may blunt what would have made for greater in-person fireworks.