Three researchers from China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) sought hospital care in November 2019, months before China disclosed the COVID-19 pandemic, the Wall Street Journal reported on May 23, citing a previously undisclosed US intelligence report.
The report mentions – details on the number of researchers affected, the timing of their illnesses, and their hospital visits. It also adds weight to calls for a broader probe of whether the COVID-19 virus could have escaped from the laboratory.
The report comes at a time when a meeting of the World Health Organization’s decision-making body, which is expected to discuss the next phase of an investigation into the origins of Covid-19.
Former US president Donald Trump was among those who supported the theory that the virus might have escaped from a bio lab in China.
A National Security Council spokeswoman said that the US government was working with the WHO and other member states to support an expert-driven evaluation of the pandemic’s origins which will be free from interference or politicization.
“We’re not going to make pronouncements that prejudge an ongoing WHO study into the source of SARS-CoV-2, but we’ve been clear that sound and technically credible theories should be thoroughly evaluated by international experts,” she said.
Meanwhile, Top Scientsts have called for more investigation to determine the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the theory of an accidental release from a lab in the central Chinese city of Wuhan.
The US continues to believe in the lab leak theory, the ministry said in response to a request for comment by the Journal.
On the other hand, Beijing denies all such allegations .