BFF-40 US accuses China of ‘xenophobia’ in treatment of Africans

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US accuses China of ‘xenophobia’ in treatment of Africans

WASHINGTON, April 11, 2020 (BSS/AFP) – The United States on
Saturday accused Chinese authorities of “xenophobia” toward Africans,
after coronavirus cases among Nigerians unleashed a wave of evictions
in the city of Guangzhou.

Africans in southern China’s largest metropolis told AFP they had
been kicked out of lodgings and then turned away from hotels over
suspicions aroused by the Nigerian cases.

“The abuse and mistreatment of Africans living and working in China
is a sad reminder of how hollow the PRC-Africa partnership really is,”
a State Department spokesperson said, using the acronym for the
Peoples Republic of China.

“At a time when we should be supporting one another to recover from
a pandemic PRC officials recklessly hid from the world, Chinese
officials are busy evicting African students into the streets without
food or shelter.”

The US in recent weeks has denounced Beijing’s lack of transparency
at the start of the coronavirus epidemic, which was first detected in
late 2019 in the Chinese city of Wuhan, saying it delayed action in
the rest of the world resulting in thousands of deaths.

Despite a recent truce in their war of words, skirmishes have
continued between the two world powers already locked in a long-term
strategic confrontation.

“It’s unfortunate but not surprising to see this kind of xenophobia
towards Africans by Chinese authorities,” the State Department
spokesperson added.

“Anyone who watches Chinese engagement in projects across Africa
recognizes this kind of abusive and manipulative behavior.”

The treatment Africans in Guangzhou also drew an expression of
“extreme concern” Saturday from the president of the African Union.

Since coming to office in 2017, the administration of President
Donald Trump has shown little interest in Africa.

But it has repeatedly warned about China’s intentions in the
continent, arguing that its investments and loans to African countries
are less than friendly.

“Promises made to Africans, including those who work and study in
China, are never kept as advertised,” the State Department
spokesperson said.

“To treat people — especially students — this way during a global
public health crisis says everything about how the PRC views their
so-called ‘partnership’ with Africa.”

BSS/AFP/MRU/2222hrs