China will maintain contacts with the World Health Organisation (WHO) in search of the origin of COVID-19, Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Wang Wenbin, said on Wednesday, February 10, 2021.
WHO experts arrived in Wuhan, considered the ground zero of the outbreak on Jan. 14, and self-isolated until Jan. 29, and thereafter visited the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which houses a laboratory known for its experiments on viruses, and the seafood market where the first Coronavirus cases emerged.
“China will continue to adhere to openness and transparency, we will continue our cooperation with WHO to identify the origin of COVID-19,’’ Wang said at a briefing.
The diplomat stressed that scientists should solve this complex issue, which affected many countries and regions, through global cooperation.
The Chinese government, according to Wang, supported WHO experts in their Wuhan mission.
“We hope that other countries will also take a scientific approach, continue to share their scientific research and its results with WHO, and play a constructive role in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of all mankind,’’ the spokesperson noted.
Notably, Beijing has expressed hope that the United States would also invite WHO experts to trace the COVID-19 origins there.
“We hope that the United States will be as open and transparent as China and will invite international experts to conduct relevant research,’’ Wang told reporters.
Earlier in the day, U.S. State Department spokesperson Ned Price said that the United States would not recognise the WHO mission’s findings on the origins of the Coronavirus unless they were verified via its own intelligence.
A WHO team member, Marion Koopmans, reacted to Washington’s statement by pointing out that it came before the mission even released the report.
The WHO already sent missions to China in February and July of 2020.
The current mission worked since mid-January and had its last day on Wednesday.
It tackled the issues pertaining to where the Coronavirus had originated and how it got to spread around the globe.