We will investigate the theory that Covid started in a Wuhan laboratory, promises Downing Street
Downing Street has finally agreed to consider the theory that Covid started in a Wuhan lab, it has emerged.
The Cabinet Office had previously claimed that it was “totally coincidental” that the virus emerged so close to a Chinese biological research facility.
But Whitehall sources said ministers would support the lab’s theory if the World Health Organization (WHO) comes up with evidence, while No. 10 reportedly said he was willing to consider the idea.
A spokesman for Rishi Sunak said the daily telegraph that “there were still questions that need to be answered about the origin and spread of Covid-19.”
They added: “The UK wants to see a robust, transparent and scientific review and believes that all possibilities remain on the table until it is finalized.”
But Whitehall sources said ministers would support the lab’s theory if evidence is produced by the World Health Organization (WHO), while No. 10 reportedly said he was willing to consider the idea (pictured: a Chinese virologist in the Wuhan lab)
It comes after former Conservative leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith yesterday demanded that ministers reveal how seriously they were taking the theory.
In Parliament, Sir Iain, co-chair of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China, asked House of Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt: “Although the government did not announce it in the Box Office, we now finally understand that their position on laboratory leaks. and about China’s involvement is that the location of the outbreak was ‘accidental’.
“That policy has never been publicly stated, so it will make time for a government statement, or preferably a debate, about whether the government believes that China poses a threat and that the lab leaks may have been the reason why millions died.” ?’
All possibilities are still on the table
Mrs Mordaunt replied: “I will certainly take up your question with the Foreign Secretary and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.” Earlier this week news broke that former health secretary Matt Hancock’s concerns about a possible lab leak were censored.
He had said in his diary that it was “too much of a coincidence” to believe that Covid started in a market near the Wuhan Institute of Virology, adding that the British would have “mocked the city” if they had made similar claims about a disease emerging near a top secret lab here.
But he was told to remove the sections from his Pandemic Diaries by public officials, who said: “This is very sensitive and would cause problems if published.”
Asked what the government’s position was on the theory, the prime minister’s spokesman said: “The UK wants to see a robust, transparent and scientific review, and believes that all possibilities remain on the table until it is carried out. cape”.
A much-criticized WHO investigation conducted with China in 2021 said the laboratory leak theory was “extremely unlikely.”