According to a news report by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, China has issued a travel alert warning its citizens not to travel to Australia in wake of the increased cases of racist attacks on Chinese and Asian people.
On Friday, the Chinese Ministry of Culture and Tourism issued a statement saying that these racist attacks are a result of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic that emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan last December.
This warning from the mainland comes as the latest sign of deteriorating relations between China and Australia. Previously, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison called for an independent probe into the origins of the novel coronavirus in Wuhan.
Australia had also announced a tough new screening regime on foreign direct investment equity inflows coming from China. Telecommunications, energy, technology and defence-manufacturing companies will be included in the zero-dollar threshold for screening.
These reforms will include a new national security test and give the treasurer last-resort powers to force asset sales. These changes were met by Beijing resorting to verbal attacks on the conservative government, saying it was doing the bidding of key ally the U.S.
New tariffs on Australian barley and a ban on beef from four meatworks have raised fears in Canberra that the Chinese government is using “economic coercion” in retaliation.
Since the deadly pandemic, China has come under scrutiny for its handling of the outbreak. Many countries, led by the United States have balmed the mainland for hiding details about the new virus and its delayed response in dealing with it which led to a global outbreak.
US President Donald Trump and its administration have also alleged that the highly infectious virus may have man-made origins and that coronavirus came from a lab in Wuhan.