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Chinese Social Media Accounts in Africa Weigh in on the Escalating Dispute Over COVID-19’s Origins

China’s outspoken Ambassador to South Africa, Lin Songtian, is emerging as one of Beijing’s leading spokespeople to rebut the well-documented assertion that the COVID-19 outbreak originated at an outdoor food market, known commonly as “wet markets,” in Wuhan. 

The conflict has recently escalated as U.S. President Donald Trump and his supporters in conservative media have taken to labeling COVID-19 as the “Chinese virus” or the Wuhan coronavirus.” Tensions between the two countries rose even further when Chinese foreign ministry Zhao Lijian published unsubstantiated allegations that the virus was actually brought to China by the U.S. government. 

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