The State Department stated on Friday that they had new information suggesting the COVID-19 pandemic could have emerged from a Chinese laboratory and not through contact with animals, such as bats.
The United States said it had obtained new evidence that researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology became sick in the fall of 2019, before the first identified case of the outbreak in the surrounding city, with symptoms which very similar to the coronavirus.
Senior officials in Washington say that outgoing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is set to make a ‘bombshell intervention’.
British Foreign Office and security sources confirmed they were expecting the claims from Washington but dismissed them in advance, saying ‘all the credible scientific evidence does not point to a leak from the laboratory’.
Boris Johnson backed the theory the virus first infected humans at the Wuhan wet market, where pangolins were among the live species on offer.
Pompeo is also expected to accuse the World Health Organisation of assisting in a Chinese cover-up by refusing to probe the lab’s possible role.
Its ten-person team tasked with investigating the pandemic’s origins will arrive in Wuhan tomorrow – but there is no mention of the lab in its official terms of reference.
Former Brexit Secretary David Davis said it was ‘vital’ the WHO team probe the institute as the possible origin of the pandemic.
He said: ‘We don’t know whether this virus was natural or artificially created, and if it came from the lab, whether this was an accident or deliberate. It would be immoral and foolish to allow any sort of cover-up.
On Friday it was announced that 2 million people had died worldwide from the outbreak, with almost 400,000 deaths in the U.S..
Sources: The Washington Examiner and The Sun; Photo: infobae.com