China rejects WHOs plan for further study of Covid-19 origins

Updated: July 22nd, 2021 05:40 PM IST

China cannot accept the World Health Organization’s plan for the second phase of a study into the origins of COVID-19, a senior Chinese health official said Thursday.

China rejects WHOs plan for further study of Covid-19 origins Photo

China cannot accept the World Health Organizations plan for the second phase of a study into the origins of Covid-19, a senior Chinese health official said Thursday.

Zeng Yixin, the vice minister of the National Health Commission, said he was “rather taken aback" by the call for a further probe into the pandemics origins and, specifically, the theory that the virus might have leaked from a Chinese lab.

The U.S. and others say that China has not been transparent about what happened in the early days of the pandemic. China accuses critics of politicizing an issue that should be left to scientists.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of the WHO, acknowledged last week that it was premature to rule out a potential link between the pandemic and a leak from a Chinese government lab in Wuhan, the city where the disease was first detected in late 2019.

Tedros said he hoped for better cooperation and access to data from China, adding that getting access to raw data had been a challenge for the international expert team that traveled to China this year to investigate the cause of the outbreak.

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