UNITED NATIONS: China's leader took oblique potshots at the US and its foreign policies on Tuesday, cautioning in a UN address that the world must "not fall into the trap of a clash of civilizations" - remarks played minutes after delegates heard the American president insist that the United Nations "hold China accountable" for how it handled the emergence of the coronavirus.
"Major countries should act like major countries," Xi Jinping said in a speech to the UN General Assembly, a speech made remotely and recorded in advance because the pandemic prevented leaders from convening as they have for decades.
The coronavirus first emerged in China early this year and has spread around the world, killing nearly 1 million people.
Xi, China's president and the leader of its Communist Party, cast the fight against the virus as an important exercise in international cooperation, an opportunity to "join hands and be prepared to meet even more global challenges."
"COVID-19 reminds us that the economic globalization is an indisputable reality and a historical trend," Xi said.
"Burying one's head in the sand like an ostrich in the face of economic globalization or trying to fight it with Don Quixote's lance goes against the trend of history. Let this be clear: The world will never return to isolation."
Such remarks, while not naming US President Donald Trump, are highly critical of him and his "America First" philosophy, which goes against China's public stance on how diplomacy should be managed.
In reality, China often acts unilaterally in affairs both domestic and international.