Anonymous experts at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) have dismissed theories that COVID-19 leaked from their lab, as well as US intelligence that three lab workers fell ill with symptoms consistent with COVID-19, according to Chinese state-run ECNS.CN.
The anonymous experts have invited the West to present their evidence.
The experts, who requested anonymity, said individuals from the West can present their proof if they have any. They also dismissed as groundless the reports from some media outlets that three workers from the institute had contracted the virus. -ECNS
According to a May 23 report by the WSJ, Three researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology were so sick in November of 2019 that they sought hospitalization.
The details of the reporting go beyond a State Department fact sheet, issued during the final days of the Trump administration, which said that several researchers at the lab, a center for the study of coronaviruses and other pathogens, became sick in autumn 2019 “with symptoms consistent with both Covid-19 and common seasonal illness.”
The disclosure of the number of researchers, the timing of their illnesses and their hospital visits come on the eve of a meeting of the World Health Organization’s decision-making body, which is expected to discuss the next phase of an investigation into Covid-19’s origins. -WSJ
"The information that we had coming from the various sources was of exquisite quality. It was very precise. What it didn’t tell you was exactly why they got sick," one source told the Journal, while another person said the information, provided by an "international partner," was potentially significant but still in need of further investigation and corroboration.
In March, former US State Department official David Asher, who led a task force on the origins of COVID-19, told a Hudson Institute seminar that he doubted the lab workers were infected with an ordinary flu.
"I’m very doubtful that three people in highly protected circumstances in a level three laboratory working on coronaviruses would all get sick with influenza that put them in the hospital or in severe conditions all in the same week, and it didn’t have anything to do with the coronavirus," he said, adding that the researchers who fell ill may represent "the first known cluster" of COVID-19 cases.
The Wuhan lab has notably refused to share raw data, safety logs and lab records of its extensive experiments with bat coronaviruses, which a US-funded NGO, EcoHealth Alliance, collaborated with.
As we asked at the time, perhaps Beijing - with its sophisticated tracking techniques - can explain the whereabouts of still-missing WIV lab worker Huang Yanling?
Huang Yanling, who worked at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, was one of scores of doctors, scientists, activists and journalists who disappeared during the Chinese Communist Party's suspected cover-up.
During the early weeks of the outbreak last February, rumours swirled on Chinese social media that the graduate student was "patient zero", creating a direct link between the controversial lab and the virus outbreak.
Chinese officials quickly stepped in to censor the reports from the internet.
The Wuhan Institute of Virology denied she was patient zero and insisted, without evidence, that she was alive and well elsewhere in the country – while scrubbing her biography and image from its website. -NZ Herald
So - maybe the US should present their evidence, and Beijing can finally share virus samples and other records they've thus far been unwilling to produce.