https://www.dailywire.com/news/biden-state-dept-on-punishing-china-for-pandemic-accountability-needed-but-focus-should-be-on-future

Secretary of State Antony Blinken told CNN in an interview that aired on Sunday that the United States’ focus in regards to holding China accountable for the COVID-19 pandemic should be on the future and improving systems to prevent future pandemics.

CNN host Dana Bash asked Blinken if China should be punished for misleading the world about the pandemic, which has resulted in the deaths of millions of people.

“You know, I think the issue for us is to make sure that we do everything possible to prevent another pandemic, even as we’re working through this one, or at the very least to make sure that we can mitigate in much more effective ways any damage done if something happens in the future,” Blinken responded. “And a big part of that is making sure that we have a system in place, including with the World Health Organization, that features transparency, that features information-sharing, and features access for international experts at the start of something like this.”

“And that’s where I think China, like every other country, has real obligations that it needs to make good on. So, I think what we need to be focused on is making sure we’re protecting ourselves and protecting the world going forward,” he added. “And that’s going to require a lot of reform. And it’s going to require China to do things that it hasn’t done in the past.”

Bash pressed Blinken on his response, noting that it sounded as if he was a “no” when it came to punishing China for their actions.

“Look, I think that we’ve got to — there’s a report coming out shortly by the World Health Organization,” Blinken responded. “We’ve got real concerns about the methodology and the process that went into that report, including the fact that the government in Beijing apparently helped to write it.”

“But let’s see what comes out in that report. But we do need to have both accountability for the past, but I think our focus needs to be on building a stronger system for the future,” Blinken added.

WATCH:

PARTIAL TRANSCRIPT:

DANA BASH, CNN HOST: You said at your confirmation hearing, Mr. Secretary, that you believe the Chinese government misled the world about coronavirus.

Given that and the millions of people, of course, who have died around the world, should China be punished for that?

ANTONY BLINKEN, SECRETARY OF STATE: You know, I think the issue for us is to make sure that we do everything possible to prevent another pandemic, even as we’re working through this one, or at the very least to make sure that we can mitigate in much more effective ways any damage done if something happens in the future.

And a big part of that is making sure that we have a system in place, including with the World Health Organization, that features transparency, that features information-sharing, and features access for international experts at the start of something like this.

And that’s where I think China, like every other country, has real obligations that it needs to make good on. So, I think what we need to be focused on is making sure we’re protecting ourselves and protecting the world going forward.

And that’s going to require a lot of reform. And it’s going to require China to do things that it hasn’t done in the past.

BASH: That sounded like a no when it comes to repercussions for what happened in the past, and maybe even that is happening currently, which is the damage that is being done around the world because of this pandemic. No repercussions? No punishment?

BLINKEN: Look, I think that we’ve got to — there’s a report coming out shortly by the World Health Organization.

We’ve got real concerns about the methodology and the process that went into that report, including the fact that the government in Beijing apparently helped to write it.

But let’s see what comes out in that report. But we do need to have both accountability for the past, but I think our focus needs to be on building a stronger system for the future.

The Daily Wire is one of America’s fastest-growing conservative media companies and counter-cultural outlets for news, opinion, and entertainment. Get inside access to The Daily Wire by becoming a member.

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