China Tech

Beijing calls for scientific explanations for where COVID-19 originated

CGTN Published: 2020-05-08 21:46:55

When asked, not for the first time, for a comment on a Chinese diplomat’s remarks last month that suggested U.S. soldiers might have brought the novel coronavirus to China, senior official Hua Chunying did not directly respond to the question and instead urged scientific explanations for the origin of the virus.

“Mr. Zhao Lijian said it might be (U.S. soldiers who brought the epidemic to Wuhan, China). If you are so keen on sticking to the ‘might be,’ for those ‘for sure evidence’ allegedly said by the U.S. president and Secretary of State, why aren’t you asking them,” said Hua, spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry.

She then reiterated China’s position regarding the origin of the deadly virus: science and facts speak for themselves.

“We should patiently leave that problem to scientists,” Hua added.

The virus, first reported in central China’s Wuhan City last December, has been declared a “pandemic” by the World Health Organization. Currently, confirmed COVID-19 cases have exceeded 3.8 million globally.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks about COVID-19 during a media briefing at the State Department in Washington, U.S., May 6, 2020. [Photo: AP]

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks about COVID-19 during a media briefing at the State Department in Washington, U.S., May 6, 2020. [Photo: AP]

Just a day ago, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo conceded that the U.S. could not be certain about where the virus originated, despite claiming over the weekend that “enormous evidence” had shown that the virus was made in a Chinese lab.

Yet he continued to push the lab claim, saying he’d be “happy to see evidence that disproves” it.

Critics have argued the Trump administration is using this theory as a way to deflect from its response to the outbreak.

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