Argentina’s President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner sparked accusations of racism Wednesday during a visit to China, after posting tweets mocking her hosts' accents. Fernandez's tweet translated as, “Did they only come for lice and petloleum?” The tweet switched 'R's and 'L's in a bid to mimic the Chinese accent.

Shortly afterwards, she subsequently tweeted: “Sorry, the levels of ridiculousness and absurdity are so high they can only be digested with humor.”

Argentinian Twitter users did not look kindly on the president's attempt at humor. In a tweet translated by The Associated Press, @FaundezLafarga wrote: “Cristina Fernandez's lack of tack and respect is incredible. She goes to China looking for [economic] agreements and she makes fun of their accents."



Chinese social media users also reacted with disdain. “It’s too bad your vision is so narrow, but it’s also because you are the president of a trifling country like Argentina—that’s why you’d say these kinds of things,” wrote one Weibo user, cited by the Wall Street Journal.

Fernandez's tweets came on the same day as she met with Chinese President Xi Jinping and addressed a conference of Chinese business leaders. She is in China hoping to secure loans to bolster her nation's highly fragile currency, amid its second default in just over a decade.

Argentina is also depending on China to finance hydroelectric dams, while China’s Sinopec is analyzing an investment with state-run YPF SA to develop shale gas and oil in the vast Vaca Muerta fields, Bloomberg reported.

In addition to Argentina's economic woes, Fernandez has been dealing with the political fallout from the suspected murder of prosecutor Alberto Nisman, who was found shot to death shortly before he was to detail allegations that Fernandez had helped protect Iranians responsible for the bombing of a Jewish center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people.

The full details of the allegations pertaining to Fernandez that Nisman was to reveal were recently made public. They include claims that the Argentine leader had agreed to a 2013 memorandum of understanding with Iran, which Nisman argued was secretly aimed at guaranteeing immunity for the Iranians implicated in the attack and taking their names off Interpol’s wanted list.