President Biden calls for U.S. agencies to investigate the origins of corona virus

May 27, 2021 by

Video

0:00/1:27

U.S. to ‘Redouble’ Efforts Into Coronavirus Origin Investigation

The Biden administration announced that it has called on intelligence agencies to redouble their efforts to investigate the origins of the coronavirus pandemic in China as a way to prevent future pandemics.

Today, the president asked the intelligence community to redouble their efforts to collect and analyze information that could bring us closer to a definitive conclusion, and to report back to him in 90 days. Back in early 2020, the president called for the C.D.C. to get access to China to learn about the virus so we could fight it more effectively. Getting to the bottom of the origin of this pandemic will help us understand how to prepare for the next pandemic, and the next one. As we have done throughout our Covid response, we have been committed to a whole of government effort to ensure we’re doing everything to both understand and end this pandemic, and to prevent future pandemics. This is why the president is asking the U.S. intelligence community, in cooperation with other elements of our government, to redouble efforts to collect and analyze information that could bring the world closer to a definitive conclusion on the origin of the virus and deliver a report to him again in 90 days. And we will continue to press China to participate in a full, transparent, evidence-based international investigation with the needed access to get to the bottom of a virus that’s taken more than three million lives across the globe.

1:28U.S. to ‘Redouble’ Efforts Into Coronavirus Origin Investigation
The Biden administration announced that it has called on intelligence agencies to redouble their efforts to investigate the origins of the coronavirus pandemic in China as a way to prevent future pandemics.CreditCredit…Ng Han Guan/Associated Press

President Biden ordered U.S. intelligence agencies on Wednesday to investigate the origins of the coronavirus, indicating that his administration takes seriously the possibility that the deadly virus was accidentally leaked from a lab, in addition to the prevailing theory that it was transmitted by an animal to humans outside a lab.

In a statement, Mr. Biden made it clear that the C.I.A. and other intelligence agencies had not yet reached a consensus on how the virus, which prompted a pandemic and has killed almost 600,000 Americans, originated in China. He directed them to report back to him in 90 days.

“I have now asked the intelligence community to redouble their efforts to collect and analyze information that could bring us closer to a definitive conclusion,” the president said.

Mr. Biden’s statement, his most public and expansive yet on the question of how the virus spread to humans, came as top health officials renewed their appeals this week for a more rigorous inquiry. And it followed mounting criticism of a report from an international team of experts convened by the World Health Organization that largely dismissed the possibility that the virus had accidentally escaped from a Chinese laboratory called the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Deep uncertainty remains about the origins of a virus that spread to every part of the globe over 17 months. The assessments of scientists are largely unchanged: Many believe that a so-called natural spillover from animal to human remains the most plausible explanation. While U.S. intelligence agencies have collected some new evidence, the additional information is not enough to allow them to draw definitive conclusions about long-simmering theories regarding the lab in the city of Wuhan, the center of the outbreak.

But the president’s carefully worded directive underscored a new surge in interest about the lab, which President Donald J. Trump and some of his top aides repeatedly blamed for the pandemic. Some scientists attributed the renewed focus on the lab to Mr. Trump’s departure from the White House — and being less identified with the theory — while others said it reflected the deep frustrations with the recent W.H.O. report that was co-written by Chinese scientists.

Related Posts

Share This

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *