WASHINGTON— Oughout. S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday stated his relationship with Chinese language leader Xi Jinping has frayed in the wake up of the novel coronavirus outbreak and that he has not voiced to the Chinese leader inside a long time.

“ I used to have a very good romantic relationship with him, ” Trump told Fox Sports Stereo in an interview, citing their own Phase 1 trade offer last year. “ I had an excellent relationship with President Xi. I like him, but I actually don’ t feel the same manner now. ”

Trump said his emotions changed amid COVID-19 .

“ I definitely feel differently. I had an extremely, very good relationship, and I haven’ t spoken to your pet for a long time. ”

Trump, who is seeking reelection in the Nov. 3 Oughout. S. election, made difficult China a key part of their 2016 presidential campaign plus touted his friendly connections with Xi during a lot of his first term within office as he sought to generate good on his trade offer promises.

Yet he said on Wednesday that the fallout from the break out was worse than the turmoil over trade. “ This can be a thousand times the industry deal what happened with all of the demise and … the world needed to shut down. It’ s the disgrace, ” he informed Fox.

1st reports of the virus surfaced from China in late 2019 and it has now infected hundreds of thousands around the world.

By Susan Heavey