China Claims Covid Anal Swabs Administered to US State Dept. Diplomats “In Error”
Unidentified US diplomats described the procedure as ‘undignified.’
After initially claiming tests conducted erroneously, China foreign ministry later denied allegations.
The Chinese government has denied claims by US State Dept. officials alleging they were administered Covid anal swab tests while in the communist nation.
The claims from State Dept. staff first surfaced in reports from Vice and The Washington Post, with the unidentified diplomats labeling the procedure “undignified.”
“The State Department never agreed to this kind of testing and protested directly to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs when we learned that some staff were subject to it,” a State Dept. rep said in a statement to Vice, adding the department is committed to preserving the “dignity” of diplomats.
Officials in China meanwhile claimed the test, reportedly administered to an unknown number of officials, was given “in error,” claiming diplomats are not required to undergo the invasive test.
“We have instructed staff to decline this test if it is asked of them, as was done in the past,” a Beijing spokesperson stated.
China’s story changed on Thursday when foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian claimed the test was never administered to US diplomats.
“China has never requested US diplomatic personnel in China to undergo anal swabs,” Lijian told the press Thursday.
In recent months, the technique has been touted by China’s National Health Commission as the most accurate way to detect the Covid-19 virus.
“Officials in China have used anal swabs to test people it considers at high-risk of contracting COVID-19, including residents of neighbourhoods with confirmed cases as well as some international travellers,” reports ChannelNewsAsia.com.
The CCP claims, however, that the tests are mostly administered to people under quarantine, and that they are not in wide use because the method is “not convenient.”
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