Tuesday, Mississippi Attorney General Lynn Fitch testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on holding China accountable for the coronavirus pandemic.

“Mississippi has faced and continues to face devastating consequences as a result of the pandemic,” a release from Fitch’s office said on Wednesday. “Over the course of three months, we have seen 22,898 cases and 989 deaths. At its height in May, over 208,000 Mississippians filed for unemployment benefits.”

Fitch’s release says the people of Mississippi have suffered tremendous loss. The AG believes that much of this loss could have been avoided had China acted as a more responsible global citizen, and Fitch says they must be held accountable for:

(1) Keeping the world in the dark about the true nature of this public health crisis
(2) Using that time to hoard masks and other personal protective equipment
(3) When the rest of the world eventually needed them, selling defective or substandard PPE at inflated costs
“We believe there is more than ample evidence that China engaged in commercial activities, which is an exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA), which allows us to seek justice in the U.S. Courts,” the release states. “But we also encourage Congress to continue considering the addition of coronavirus-specific exceptions to the FSIA to allow states and citizens to have their day in court. We will not turn a diplomatic blind eye but will use whatever tools we have at our disposal to seek justice. China needs to know we’re going to hold them accountable.”
AG Fitch’s full Senate testimony, can be read here. You can also watch yesterday’s hearing at this link.