China’s foreign ministry on Friday wished President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump goes after Cassidy after saying he wouldn't support him for president in 2024 Jan. 6 panel lays out criminal contempt case against Bannon Hillicon Valley — Presented by Xerox — Agencies sound alarm over ransomware targeting agriculture groups MORE and first lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpGOP leader's remarks on Fox underscore Trump's power White House orders release of Trump records to Jan. 6 committee Ex-Trump aide sues Grisham over abuse allegations MORE a “speedy recovery” following their testing positive for the coronavirus.
The message was tweeted by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying and appears to be the first official pronouncement from Beijing since Trump announced early Friday morning that he and the first lady had contracted COVID-19.
The message from Beijing joins other well-wishes from capitals across the world that have wished the president and first lady a quick recovery.
But Beijing’s statement stood in contrast to Chinese state media — which is controlled by the ruling Chinese Communist Party — that had earlier mocked the president's and his wife’s diagnoses, writing on Twitter that they “have paid the price for [Trump’s] gamble to play down COVID-19.”
Trump has blamed China for the spread of the pandemic, as the first cases appeared in the Chinese city of Wuhan in late 2019. His insistence on China’s responsibility and the need to hold it accountable has contributed to a spiraling of relations between Washington and Beijing and the president terminating the U.S. relationship with the World Health Organization, accusing them of bias towards China.
The president has been criticized as blaming China as an effort to distract from his own handling of the virus in the U.S., where he and the first lady now join the over 7.2 million people in the U.S. who have tested positive for the virus.
More than 207,000 in the U.S. have died from the coronavirus. More than 2.8 million people here have recovered since the first domestic case was identified, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.