Home/ News / World/  ‘Hysterical and absurd’: Chinese diplomat lashes out at US for shooting down suspected ‘spy’ balloon

Reacting to the United States shooting the suspected Chinese ‘spy’ balloon, a top diplomat from Beijing lashed out a Biden administration that it is ‘hysterical and absurd’ and further added that it is an attempt to ‘divert attention from domestic problem’

"There are many balloons from many countries in the sky. Do you want to down each and every one of them?" Wang Yi on Saturday told the Munich Security Conference. "We urge the United States not to do such preposterous things simply to divert attention from its own domestic problems."

“This near-hysterical behavior shows the ignorance and prejudice the US holds against China has reached a ridiculous level," Wang said. 

A suspected Chinese surveillance balloon, which Beijing denies was a government spy vessel, spent a week flying over the United States and Canada before being shot down off the Atlantic Coast earlier this month on U.S. President Joe Biden's orders. Wang reinforced Beijing’s position that the balloon was for civilian use and criticized the US for “ignoring basic facts."

Downing of balloon over the Atlantic coast has disrupted efforts to stabilize relations between the two countries. The U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who cancelled his trip to China since the China Spy balloon controversy surfaced, hinted that he aims to speak with Chinese President Xi Jinping to “get to the bottom" of the balloon spat, without specifying when.

Blinken is also considering meeting Wang on the sidelines of the Munich conference, but there has been no confirmed meeting as of early Saturday. Blinken is set to depart Munich on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the US Navy has also wrapped up its search for debris from the Chinese balloon shot down off South Carolina on 4 February, with the remaining pieces of the balloon's payload being transferred to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for counterintelligence exploitation. 

The US Navy statement did not provide any further details about the nature or condition of the debris. The National Security Council has referred all inquiries to the Northern Command and the Defense Department.

(With inputs from agencies)


Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Updated: 18 Feb 2023, 04:49 PM IST
Recommended For You
Get alerts on WhatsApp
Set Preferences My Reads Watchlist Feedback Redeem a Gift Card Logout