A staff of specialists from the World Well being Group investigating the origins of the pandemic visited a analysis middle in Wuhan, China, on Wednesday that has been a spotlight of a number of unfounded theories concerning the coronavirus.
The W.H.O. scientists met with workers members on the middle, the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which homes a state-of-the-art laboratory recognized for its analysis on coronaviruses.
The institute got here below scrutiny final yr because the Trump administration promoted the unsubstantiated principle that the virus may need leaked from a government-run laboratory in China. However many senior American officers have mentioned in non-public that proof pointing to a lab accident is principally circumstantial.
Most scientists agree that the coronavirus more than likely emerged within the pure world and unfold from animals to people. Peter Daszak, one of many specialists on the W.H.O. staff, described the dialog on Wednesday on the Wuhan institute as candid. “Key questions requested & answered,” he wrote on Twitter, with out offering particulars.
One of many individuals the W.H.O. staff met was Shi Zhengli, often called China’s “Bat Lady” for her research on coronaviruses present in bats. In June, Dr. Shi had expressed preliminary fears that the virus may have leaked from the lab, based on an interview with the Scientific American. Later, checks confirmed that not one of the gene sequences had matched the viruses that workers members had been finding out.
Individually, China introduced on Wednesday that it might present 10 million Covid-19 vaccines to Covax, a world physique established to advertise equitable entry to coronavirus inoculations.
The choice is “one other vital measure taken by China to advertise the honest distribution of vaccines,” mentioned Wang Wenbin, a International Ministry spokesman.
He additionally mentioned that the World Well being Group had began reviewing the emergency authorization of vaccines. It was unclear which vaccines Mr. Wang was referring to. Two vaccines — manufactured by the Chinese language firms Sinovac and Sinopharm — have been authorised to be used in China.