The coronavirus outbreak started in China at the end of 2019 and since then has claimed the lives of more than 108,000 people across the globe. The Chinese science lab in Wuhan which has been doing experiments on coronavirus was given £3 million from the US government. The Wuhan Institute of Virology is a level four biosafety lab, which is the highest level and precautions must be taken to stop diseases being transmitted to humans.
This comes as senior Government sources in the UK have revealed an accident at the Wuhan laboratory could be how the horrifying disease started.
One possibility is that scientists at the research centre could have become infected after being sprayed with blood containing the virus and then passed it on.
The current hypotheses is that the virus was transmitted to humans from a live animal market in Wuhan.
However, these Yunnan caves are 1,000 miles away from the Chinese city and studies have traced the COVID-19 genome there.
A UK government source has told the Mail on Sunday that an accident at the laboratory is “no longer being discounted”.
According to The Mail on Sunday, the scientists published research in November 2017 under the heading: “Discovery of a rich gene pool of bat SARS-related coronaviruses provides new insights into the origin of SARS coronavirus.”
According to the paper, the research was: “Bats in a cave in Yunnan, China were captured and sampled for coronaviruses used for lab experiments.
“All sampling procedures were performed by veterinarians with approval from the Animal Ethics Committee of the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
“Bat samplings were conducted ten times from April 2011 to October 2015 at different seasons in their natural habitat at a single location (cave) in Kunming, Yunnan Province, China. Bats were trapped and faecal swab samples were collected.”
Many scientists agree the virus is likely to have come from bats but could have passed through another animal before affecting humans.
With regards to US cash being used for the research, US Congressman Matt Gaetz said: “I’m disgusted to learn that for years the US government has been funding dangerous and cruel animal experiments at the Wuhan Institute, which may have contributed to the global spread of coronavirus, and research at other labs in China that have virtually no oversight from US authorities.”
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In response to the claims, the Chinese Embassy has described the speculation as “hasty and reckless allegations”.
They said: ”The origin of a virus is a complicated, scientific issue. It should be left to scientists and doctors to find out through studies and research.
“Hasty and reckless allegations, such as naming China as the origin in an attempt to shift the blame, before any scientific conclusion is reached, is totally irresponsible and will definitely do harm to international co-operation at this critical time.
“Covid-19 is a global challenge. The right thing to do for every responsible stakeholder, including the media, is to work together and leave no place for rumours or prejudice.”
Published at Sun, 12 Apr 2020 07:59:00 +0000