Pompeo briefs reporters Wednesday. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP via Getty Images
Foreign ministers of the G7 countries failed to agree to a joint statement following a video conference Wednesday in part because the Trump administration insisted the statement refer to COVID-19 as the "Wuhan virus," Der Spiegel first reported and multiple U.S. outlets have confirmed.
Why it matters: The world's two most powerful countries are in a battle of narratives over the pandemic, with some in Beijing spreading disinformation about its origins and U.S. officials like Secretary of State Mike Pompeo increasingly blaming the Chinese government.
- The phrase "Wuhan virus" has not been adopted by other countries, and G7 members considered it needlessly antagonistic.
- The countries ultimately agreed on a common set of principles and actions to confront the coronavirus, and each released their own statements after the video conference.