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US ambassador tweets about "China Virus"

21.07.2020 - 14:01
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US ambassador to Iceland, Jeffrey Ross Gunther, last night re-tweeted a tweet from president Donald Trump in which he encourages Americans to wear masks. The ambassador uses the term "China Virus" to describe the coronavirus pandemic and says that "we are united" to defeat the illness. His re-tweet featured Icelandic and American flag emojis.

The tweet prompted a backlash from some Icelanders, calling on the ambassador to remove the Icelandic flag.

Trump has been criticised for his use of the term "China virus" throughout the pandemic, and also for encouraging people not to wear masks. He has now changed his mind on the latter, encoraging mask use, but using the controversial phrase in his tweet once again.

Trump wrote in his tweet: "Many people say that it is Patriotic to wear a face mask when you can’t socially distance. There is nobody more Patriotic than me, your favorite President!"

The sitting president faces a tough challenge for re-election this autumn, with polls showing his Democratic rival Joe Biden has the lead at this stage.

Despite the president's choice of words, many in Iceland believe it was undiplomatic for the ambassador to also use the term "China virus" in his re-tweet, thereby prompting some to call on him to remove the Icelandic flag.

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