BEIJING, April 18 (Xinhua) -- Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Friday discussed the COVID-19 epidemic and the China-Africa cooperation in a phone conversation with Amadou Ba, foreign minister of Senegal, which holds the co-chair of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).
Noting that China bears in mind that African countries, including Senegal, gave firm support to China during the critical phase of its fight against the epidemic, Wang said China is very concerned about the ongoing spread of the epidemic in Africa.
The Chinese government and all sectors of society have taken active actions to assist Africa, with various material assistance shipped to African countries and the African Union (AU) in batches, Wang said.
Chinese provinces and cities have also taken the initiative to provide assistance to African countries and renowned Chinese medical experts have held 14 video conferences with their African counterparts and the 46 Chinese medical teams in Africa have conducted nearly 400 training sessions for local medical workers, according to the Chinese minister.
Wang also noted that at the request of the World Health Organization and the AU, China has sent two medical teams to Ethiopia and Burkina Faso respectively to assist the two countries and their neighboring countries in fighting the epidemic.
China is preparing to provide a new batch of urgently needed supplies to African countries for the next stage and send more expert teams to relevant African countries to help fight the epidemic.
Wang said that the Chinese people have a very strong bond with the African people, and China-Africa relations have withstood the test of the vicissitudes of the international situation and have an unbreakable solid foundation.
He recalled that when the Ebola epidemic broke out in Africa in 2014, the Chinese medical team went into the affected area while others withdrew, putting their own life and death aside and treating the patients side by side with their African brothers.
During the difficult time of China's fighting against the COVID-19 epidemic, Senegal and many other African countries maintained trust in China and didn't evacuate their students, Wang said, adding that China has also kept its promise to protect the safety of African nationals in China, especially students, just like family members.
As the co-chair of FOCAC, Wang said, China is willing to work with Senegal to implement the outcomes of the FOCAC Beijing Summit, especially in the fields public health cooperation, so as to guide China-Senegal and China-Africa relations to achieve greater development.
For his part, Ba noted that Senegal-China relations are based on friendship, sincerity and mutual trust, and the two heads of state have maintained close contact and both countries have achieved fruitful results in cooperation within the framework of the FOCAC, adding that Senegal is ready to work with China to implement the results of the FOCAC Beijing summit.
Senegal appreciates China's assistance in fighting the epidemic, Ba said. The epidemic is currently posing a severe challenge for African countries and prompting tougher measures across the continent, said Ba, expressing his belief that China will continue to support the continent. Enditem