FORMER US President Donald Trump says China owes “reparations” to the US for the damage done by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Trump made the claims during one of his first public appearances since leaving the White House back in January.
Speaking at a Republican convention in Greenville, North Carolina, the ex-President called for the Far East superpower to be presented for a bill for at least $10 trillion.
Trump also suggested any countries owing money to China should have their debts cancelled as a “down payment” on the reparations owed.
He also called for the US to place a 100 per cent tariff on all goods coming from China.
The former Apprentice star said: “We demand reparations from the Communist Party of China. China must pay. They must pay.”
Trump also doubled down on his belief Covid-19 was leaked out of a laboratory in China.
The deadly coronavirus, which has killed 3.7 million people to date, originated out of the Chinese city of Wuhan but there is no definitive proof it was man-made.
He said: “We had this horrible thing come in from China, we got that one right too by the way, do you notice, you see what’s going on, it’s called the lab, that was an easy one, Wuhan.”
Trump also used the speech, in front of a crowd of some 1,200 Republicans, to take credit for America’s vaccination programme, claiming he took “somewhat of a bet” by investing billions from the public purse in vaccines.
“We have done an incredible job, mostly importantly with the vaccine coming up with it, incredible job,” he said.
Trump also continued to peddle claims the 2020 US Election was rigged against him, despite losing by more than seven million votes to President Biden, dubbing it the “crime of the century.”
He also branded the ongoing investigations into his business affairs by US attorneys in New York as simply “witch-hunts” and warned they would continue “until November 2024."
The ex-president also defended his close relationships with Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un during his time in the White House.
“Kim Jong-un, he’s a different kind of a guy. It takes a different kind of guy to talk to him, too.”
He also accused President Biden of leading "the most radical left-wing administration in history" and branded infectious diseases expert Dr Anthony Fauci “not a great doctor.”
Trump suggested Dr Fauci had been “wrong on every issue” including the wearing of masks in public and appearing sceptical of the idea China developed the virus in a lab.