China appoints US ambassador Qin Gang as new foreign minister, state radio reports

 (Allen J Schaben/Los Angeles Times/Shutterstock)
(Allen J Schaben/Los Angeles Times/Shutterstock)

China has appointed Qin Gang as its new foreign minister, state radio reported on Friday.

Qin, who is currently the Chinese ambassador to the United States, would be replacing Wang Yi.

It comes as Beijing hit out at the growing number of countries imposing Covid-19 testing requirements on travellers from China.

South Korea and Spain the latest countries on Friday to join the United States, India and others in imposing Covid tests on people travelling from China, amid soaring cases there.

“The real intention is to sabotage China’s three years of Covid-19 control efforts and attack the country’s system,” state-run tabloid Global Times said in an article, calling the restrictions “unfounded” and “discriminatory.”

Acting a day after European Union health officials failed to agree on a joint course of action, Spain followed Italy’s lead to become the second of the bloc’s 27 members to require tests for travellers from China.

“At a national level, we will implement airport controls requiring all passengers coming from China to show a negative COVID-19 test or proof of a full vaccination course,” Health Minister Carolina Darias said.

Over the past days, officials in France, Germany and Portugal have said they saw no need for now for new restrictions, while Austria has stressed the economic benefits of Chinese tourists’ return to Europe. The UK currently has no plans to impose testing requirements on travellers from China.

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