China has rejected calls for an independent international investigation into the origin of the coronavirus, BBC reported. A top Chinese diplomat in the UK, Chen Wen told the BBC that the demands were politically motivated and would divert China’s attention from fighting the pandemic.
Information about the origin of Covid-19 and how it initially spread could help countries tackle the disease.
The virus is thought to have emerged at a wildlife market in the city of Wuhan late last year. Meanwhile an EU report accuses China of spreading disinformation about the crisis.
US President Donald Trump has also repeatedly attacked China for its handling of the outbreak, and the state of Missouri is suing the Chinese government, accusing it of doing little to stop the spread of the virus.
On April 19, Trump said the United States wanted to send a team to China to examine the extent of the spread of Covid-19. America has launched an investigation into whether the coronavirus originated in a high-security lab in Wuhan. Several conspiracy theories are circling about the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s P4 laboratory, which is equipped to handle dangerous viruses.
Almost from the start of the pandemic, there have been calls for international investigators to be allowed into China to find out how it all started.
On Thursday Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said that he would push for an investigation at the annual meeting of the World Health Assembly, the decision-making body of the World Health Organization (WHO). Australia sits on the executive board of the assembly. The body already plans to discuss calls for a “lessons learned” review of health emergencies.
However, Chen said on Friday that the rumours about the origins of the virus were like a “political virus” that was as dangerous as the coronavirus itself. The World Health Organization as well as several scientists have debunked claims that the coronavirus emerged in a Wuhan laboratory.
“Will make sure world knows Covid-19 originated in China”: US
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told a television show host on Friday that America is working with other countries to make sure the world knows that the virus originated in China, PTI reported. “We need to hold accountable the parties responsible for the deaths here in the United States and the enormous economic costs that have been posed on the US,” Pompeo told The Ben Shapiro Show in an interview.
Pompeo said that the entire global economic system has been destroyed due to the pandemic. He said the United States is helping other countries get their economies back on track, so that international travel and global commerce can recommence.
“We are also working with those countries to make sure they understand that this was in fact a virus that originated in Wuhan, China, that the Chinese government knew about this certainly by December of 2019,” he said. “And that they failed to comply with their most fundamental obligations as a nation, and importantly, too, failed to comply with the international health regulations of the World Health Organization…”
He claimed that the world’s largest businesses can now visualise the political risk associated with operating in China.
Pompeo also claimed that the World Health Organization failed to protect the world from the Covid-19 pandemic. “We’re not going to let that happen again, and we’re going to set up something, a system, which delivers an outcome…which reduces the risk that anything like this can ever happen again, from China or from anyplace else,” the secretary of state added.