By Alaattin Dogru
DAKAR, Senegal (AA) – African officials have reacted strongly to recent reports of discrimination in China against Africans, who are being blamed for a second wave of the novel coronavirus outbreak there.
The development comes amid claims that in many areas of China, especially the southern city of Guangzhou, Africans are being barred from places such as hospitals and shopping malls, are being forced out of their homes and hotel rooms, and face violence in the streets.
It follows heightened media coverage in China of a new wave of cases originating from infections outside the country.
African countries' ambassadors in China sent a joint diplomatic note to China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi and called on the country to stop these discriminatory actions, which give the impression that Africans are spreading COVID-19 in the country.
"The Group of African Ambassadors in Beijing demands the cessation of forceful testing, quarantine and other inhuman treatments meted out to Africans," it said.
Musa Faki Muhammed, head of the Organization of African Unity, said recently on Twitter that his office had invited China's ambassador to the African Union, Liu Yuxi, “to express our extreme concern at allegations of maltreatment of Africans in #Guangzhou+called for immediate remedial measures in line with our excellent relations.”
Muhammed stressed that constructive steps need to be taken in order not to harm the good relations between Africa and China.
Chinese officials have rejected the accusations and claim these are isolated incidents that do not reflect the whole story.
*Writing by Firdevs Bulut