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China invokes trade benefits in reaction to Trump’s ‘rape’ comment

world Updated: May 04, 2016 17:09 IST
Hindustan Times
Donald Trump,US presidential elections,China
US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks in New York on Tuesday, following his victory in the primary in Indiana. (AFP)

China on Wednesday appeared cautious while reacting to US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s comment accusing the country of “rape” and said that trade between the world’s two biggest economies was mutually beneficial.

In the run-up to Tuesday’s Indiana primary, Trump had told a campaign rally, “We can’t continue to allow China to rape our country, and that’s what we’re doing.”

“We’re going to turn it around, and we have the cards, don’t forget it,” he said. “We have a lot of power with China.”

Read: Ahead of Indiana primary, Donald Trump says China ‘raping’ US

Asked about Trump’s comments and whether Beijing was nervous about the prospect of him becoming US president, foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei told reporters that the election was a US internal affair and that China had no comment on it.

“I want to point out that US-China trade relations are essentially mutually beneficial and win-win in keeping with the shared interests of both sides... We hope that everyone can view such cooperation from an objective and reasonable perspective,” he added.

Trump has repeatedly blasted the Asian giant for its trade policies, blaming it for weakening the US economy and taking American jobs.

Although the comments have contributed to his populist appeal at home, they have raised eyebrows in China, where he is seen with a combination of bemusement and grudging respect.

At his annual press conference in March, Premier Li Keqiang had said diplomatically that the US presidential campaign was “full of clamour and very eye-catching”.

However, the Global Times newspaper, which is close to the ruling Communist party, showed no such reticence, saying that Trump’s comments were “abusively racist and extremist”.

“The rise of a racist in the US political arena worries the whole world,” it said.

Read: Ted Cruz quits presidential race after Trump wins Indiana

First Published: May 04, 2016 17:09 IST