The Chinese Embassy to Israel apologized for stating that the decision by Israel to close its borders to visitors from China due to the spread of the coronavirus is “reminiscent of the Holocaust” on Sunday, according to Channel 13.
“This is reminiscent of World War II, the Holocaust, the darkest days of human history,” said the embassy during a press conference on Sunday. “Millions of Jews were murdered and many were banned from entering countries. Some countries opened their gates, one of them was China.”
The Chinese embassy later apologized for the comments.
“Regarding the press conference held today by the Chinese embassy in Israel, we would like to clarify that there was no intention what so ever to compare the dark days of the holocaust with the current situation and the efforts taken by the Israeli government to protect its citizens,” said “We would like to apologize if someone understood our message the wrong way.”
The decision comes as Chinese people around the world have been impacted by racism in light of the spread of the Novel Coronavirus that began in Wuhan, China, and has now infected 14,628 people worldwide and killed 305 people. The first death outside of China was reported on Sunday, according to Reuters.
In Indonesia, residents have demanded that Chinese visitors leave hotels. In South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and Vietnam, restaurants have refused to serve Chinese customers, according to Channel 13.