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US Did Not Provide Access to Reports, Accusing China of Causing COVID-19: WHO

CC BY 2.0 / TNS Sofres / Test tubes
Test tubes - Sputnik International, 1920, 03.03.2023
GENEVA (Sputnik) - The United States did not provide the World Health Organization (WHO) with access to data and reports that accuse a Chinese laboratory of causing COVID-19, Emerging Diseases and Zoonoses Lead at the WHO Health Emergencies Programme Maria Van Kerkhove said on Friday.
"We have made requests to senior mission officials here in Geneva of the US mission for information from the latest reports from the Department of Energy, as well as additional reports from other US agencies. We have also reached out to HHS [United States Department of Health and Human Services]... As of right now, we do not have access to those reports or to the data that was underling in how those reports were generated," Van Kerkhove said.
All countries, institutions or organizations are encouraged to share any information with the WHO regarding the origin of the COVID-19 virus, the expert underscored.
An aerial view shows the P4 laboratory (L) at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan in China's central Hubei province on April 17, 2020 - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.03.2023
'Buildup for War': US Spins COVID Lab Leak Narrative to 'Pin Blame on China'
On Thursday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the novel coronavirus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic may have originated in a Chinese laboratory, but there is no evidence it was a bioweapon or intentionally released.
“The bottom line is we don’t know conclusively, but the possibility that it originated in a lab is very clear and very real,” Blinken said during an interview with India Today. “That’s also separate from the question of whether this had anything to do with a biological weapon and anything to do with intentional actions by a country to develop it, use it, release it.”
No US agency has found evidence of COVID-19 being released intentionally as a biological weapon, Blinken added.
On Tuesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray said that the agency assesses that the COVID-19 pandemic “most likely” originated in a lab in Wuhan, China. Other intelligence agencies have tied the novel coronavirus to a market in Wuhan.
Commenting on the FBI's data on a lab origin of the coronavirus, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning said on Wednesday that Beijing opposes any form of political manipulation under the pretext of finding the source of COVID-19.
"The Chinese side categorically opposes any form of political manipulation under the pretext of searching for the source [of COVID-19]. The involvement of the intelligence services in scientific matters itself is a politicization of this issue," Mao told reporters.
Conclusions based on falsified reports by US intelligence agencies have no credibility, the diplomat added.
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