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Bass Says Virus Should Spread to China Leadership as Spat Widens

Hannah Levitt

(Bloomberg) -- Kyle Bass took his long-time battle with China up another notch by getting into a heated spat with the influential editor-in-chief of a Communist Party-backed newspaper.

The hedge fund manager suggested on Twitter that the U.S. abandon efforts to help contain the coronavirus and let it spread through China’s leadership.

“We should take our supplies and go back home. Let the chinese virus rampage through the ranks of the GT and the rest of the communist party,” the founder and chief investment officer of Dallas-based Hayman Capital Management wrote.

He was responding to a tweet from Hu Xijin, editor-in-chief of the Global Times, a daily run by the Chinese Communist Party’s People’s Daily, in which he complained about “belated” U.S. aid.

Bass later deleted the tweet but doubled down when Hu suggested he apologize.

“I will not,” Bass replied. “You arrested, censured, and ‘punished’ (only God knows what you did to him and the other 7 doctors) the heroes of Wuhan. You are disgrace to humanity.”

In an emailed statement to Bloomberg News addressing his spat with Hu, he said he deleted the tweet because he “felt that it was too harsh for the rank and file” of the Global Times, but that he will “never apologize to a self-righteous, attempted manipulator of public opinion,” referring to Hu.

Bass has long been a vocal critic of China’s policies -- he forecast last month that Hong Kong will suffer a “full-fledged banking crisis” this year and said it’s unlikely that Beijing will adhere to a trade deal with the U.S.

The coronavirus disease surfaced in late December in Wuhan, China. The ensuing global outbreak has infected tens of thousands of people and killed more than 800.

To contact the reporter on this story: Hannah Levitt in New York at hlevitt@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael J. Moore at mmoore55@bloomberg.net, James Ludden

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