China has shown its disdain for the leaders of the G7 nations after the group joined together to demand transparency from Beijing and push for a fresh investigation into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Global Times, a mouthpiece for the Chinese Communist Party, promoted a cartoon which mocked the G7 leaders and depicted them as different animals.
The image, titled The Last G7, was published by Chinese cartoonist “Bantonglaoatang” on social media site Weibo.
The Global Times claimed the cartoon was praised across social media on Sunday for “vividly and straightforwardly revealing the evil intentions of the West that tries to lay a siege to China”.
The cartoon is a parody of Leonardo da Vinci’s The Last Supper and includes depictions of nine animals that represent the US, the UK, Italy, Canada, Japan, Germany, France, Australia and India.
Australia is represented by a kangaroo, the US is a bald eagle, the UK is a lion, Canada is represented as a beaver, France is a rooster, India is shown as an elephant, Italy is a wolf, Japan is shown as a shiba inu dog and Germany is represented by a black hawk.
Other elements of the cartoon include US dollars being printed on a roll of toilet paper, a cake printed with a map of China and Japan’s dog pouring green liquid into everyone’s cups from a kettle marked with a radioactive warning symbol.
A quote on the cartoon reads: “Through this we can still rule the world”.
The Global Times claims the different facial expressions and gestures imply each G7 leader has its “own axe to grind on the common conspiracies of suppressing China and upholding the Western hegemony”.
The publication quoted vlogger “sharp tongued pumpkin” in saying the depiction of Australia highlighted the “double-faced” nature of the country.
“Sitting next to the dog is a kangaroo, which is stretching its left hand to the banknotes that the US is printing, while grasping a bag in its right hand,” The Global Times wrote,
“The kangaroo symbolises the double-faced Australia which actively cooperates with the US in containing China, but is also eager to earn money from China, its largest trading partner, according to ‘sharp-tongued pumpkin’.”
The publication also quoted the vlogger saying the US’s eagle depicts shows the country “trapped in its growing debt crisis and racial conflicts, but still points fingers at China”.
It goes on to claim the wolf waving its hands shows Italy’s reluctance to collaborate with the US against China and the green drink being poured by Japan is the “contaminated water” the country plans to release to the Pacific from the destroyed Fukushima nuclear plant.
The publication also claimed the Germany’s black hawk and France’s rooster seem more interested in their own issues rather than the “US’ propaganda”.
The cartoon comes after a communique released at the conclusion of the G7 summit in Cornwall called for the “timely, transparent, expert-led and science-based” study, convened by the World Health Organisation (WHO), to determine how the pandemic began.
The group also called on China to “respect human rights and fundamental freedoms”, alluding to its treatment of the Uighur ethnic minority in Xinjiang, as well as Hong Kong.
A previous WHO study into Covid-19’s origins was hampered by China’s lack of co-operation. The organisation’s director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said it was not “extensive enough” and “further investigation” was required.
During US President Joe Biden’s press conference at the end of the G7 summit he was asked what China could do to “ease tensions” with other countries.
“I think China has to start to act more responsibly in terms of international norms on human rights and transparency. Transparency matters across the board,” Mr Biden said.
“We haven’t had access to the laboratories to determine whether or not – and I have not reached a conclusion, because our intelligence community is not certain yet – whether or not this was a consequence of a marketplace, a bat interfacing with animals (he meant humans) … or whether it was an experiment gone awry in a laboratory.
“It’s important to know that.”