China insists on broadening search for SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus origins “to other countries”, reiterating that the theory that the virus came out of a Wuhan laboratory is “extremely unlikely” and asking “not to politicize” the investigations in this regard.
“No country has the right to put your political interests before science“Deputy Foreign Minister Ma Zhaxou said in a virtual press conference in response to what Beijing considers pressure from the United States to prove the theory that the virus came out of the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
The report of the first mission of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Wuhan, published in April, pointed out four possible theories on the origin of Covid-19, although he pointed out that a laboratory accident was the least likely.
“All parties must respect that study, including the WHO itself, “Ma has rebuked after the organization itself asked for” space “to continue its investigations after China’s rejection of another phase of its inquiries in its territory.
WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus also asked China “make it transparent and open” and that it provides “raw data on the early days of the pandemic,” while Beijing has repeatedly denied that it withheld information or hindered the work of the WHO scientists who traveled to Wuhan.
“It is unacceptable that the WHO come out now with a second phase of investigations based on the laboratory theory, “added official Gu Jinhui, while the head of the team of Chinese experts that investigated the origin of the coronavirus, Liang Wannian, indicated that” the next phase of investigations should be carried out in other countries. “
Among them, he noted, “those in which horseshoe bats and pangolins reside.” Liang also recovered the theory that the virus was able to reach the Huanan market in Wuhan, where the first covid outbreak was detected, “through the cold chain of frozen foods”.
The official press
The official press launched a large-scale offensive this week to influence the first outbreaks of covid may have occurred in other countries, including Spain, Italy and France, also pointing to the possibility that the virus escaped from the US laboratory at Fort Detrick, which was closed in July 2019.
“If you don’t want to abandon this laboratory theory, it would also be necessary to investigate in other centers, like the one at Fort Detrick. But we believe that the WHO report, which considers a leak highly unlikely, should be respected, “said Ma.
Ma Zhaxou Deputy Foreign Minister The Chinese media offensive went so far as to mention a suspected Swiss biologist named Wilson Edwards, that denounced the politicization of the pandemic against China, and that turned out to be false.
The Chinese state press news sources used a Facebook account (now deleted) in which the non-existent biologist criticized the US and the WHO. for putting pressure on China to allow further investigation of the theory that the coronavirus may have emerged from a laboratory in Wuhan.
The criticism of Ma and the offensive by the state press come almost three months after US President Joe Biden order the intelligence services of his country a report on the origin of the pandemic after they assured that several researchers from the Wuhan Institute of Virology fell ill in November 2019.
For its part, the WHO has asked China already “all governments” to “depoliticize” the COVID-19 pandemic and “cooperate to accelerate studies on the origins” of SARS-CoV-2.
Through a statement, the United Nations international health body points out that the next series of studies on the origin of the virus “would include a more in-depth examination of the raw data. of the first cases and of the sera of the possible first cases of 2019 “.
“Access to data is of vital importance to evolve our understanding of science and should not be politicized in any way, “they insist.
Thus, they affirm that they are collaborating with several countries that have reported the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in samples of biological specimens stored as of 2019.
“For example, in Italy, the WHO facilitated an independent evaluation by international laboratories of the findings of one of these studies, which included the blind re-analysis of pre-pandemic blood samples “, they exemplify.
“Sharing raw data and giving permission for samples to be retested in laboratories outside of Italy reflects scientific solidarity at its best and is nothing other than what we encourage all countries, including China, to support for that we can advance in the studies from the origins quickly and efficiently, “they argue again.