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Missouri 1st state to sue China, CCP for economic damages from coronavirus

Missouri suing China for tens of billions of dollars of damages from Wuhan coronavirus pandemic

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(Internet image)

(Internet image)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Missouri on Tuesday (April 21) became the first U.S. state to sue communist China for its bungled management of the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt (R) filed a civil lawsuit in a federal court against several entities within China, including the Chinese government, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), National Health Commission, Ministry of Emergency Management, Ministry of Civil Affairs, Hubei Government, Wuhan City Government, Wuhan Institute of Virology, and Chinese Academy of Sciences. The suit charges Chinese authorities with committing "an appalling campaign of deceit, concealment, misfeasance, and inaction," which led to the catastrophic pandemic.

The suit condemns China and the listed Chinese entities for covering up the outbreak, not sharing the genome of the virus, censoring the media, destroying scientific materials, hoarding personal protective equipment, and spreading disinformation, among other offenses. It then demands the court order the Chinese defendants pay compensation of tens of billions of dollars.

One of the most egregious acts listed in the suit is China's constant denial of human-to-human transmission of the disease, despite strong evidence to the contrary on Dec. 25. The suit states that China's denials "induced the WHO to also deny or downplay the risk of human-to-human transmission," before the World Health Organization finally acknowledged human-to-human transmissibility on Jan. 24.

In a novel approach, which could be emulated by other states and countries around the world, Missouri is not only suing the Chinese government but also the CCP, which as a separate entity is not protected by sovereign immunity. In a statement released on his website, Schmitt wrote the charges include "one count of public nuisance, one count of abnormally dangerous activities, and two counts of breach of duty."

Schmitt emphasized the pandemic created by China's negligence has resulted in "unprecedented" jobless claims, a massive spike in the unemployment rate, and a tremendous impact on the state's budget. He wrote the state will seek compensation in the form of "civil penalties and restitution, abatement of the public nuisance, cessation of abnormally dangerous activities, punitive damages, and more."