President Donald Trump speaks during the daily briefing on the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, in the Brady Briefing Room at the White House on March 31, 2020, in Washington, DC.
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images
President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he has not received any intelligence reports showing that the Chinese government had underreported the number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the country.
“I’m not an accountant from China,” Trump said when asked at a White House press briefing whether China’s numbers are accurate.
Still, Trump said that Beijing’s tally appeared “to be a little bit on the light side, and I’m being nice when I say that, relative to what we witnessed and what was reported.”
The president’s remarks came hours after a news report said the president did receive a secret intelligence brief noting that China deliberately underreported the extent of its COVID-19 outbreak.
Bloomberg, citing three U.S. officials, reported that the intelligence community made that assessment in a classified report that the White House received last week.
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