Republicans on the House Foreign Affairs Committee released a report on the origins of COVID-19 and believe the “preponderance of evidence suggests” the virus was accidentally released from a Wuhan Institute of Virology lab prior to Sept. 12, 2019. It added the virus, or viral sequence that was genetically manipulated was likely collected in a cave in Yunnan province between 2012 and 2015.
Representative Michael McCaul said he believes it is time to “completely dismiss” the wet market as the source of the outbreak.
“We know gain-of-function research was happening at the WIV and we know it was being done in unsafe conditions,” he said.
McCaul said when Chinese Communist Party officials and scientists realized what happened, they began “frantically covering up the leak, including taking the virus database offline in the middle of the night and requesting more than $1 million for additional security.”
“But their coverup was too late – the virus was already spreading throughout the megacity of Wuhan,” McCaul said. “Within a month, satellite images show a significant uptick in the number of people at hospitals around the WIV with symptoms similar to COVID-19. At the same time, athletes at the Military World Games became sick with symptoms similar to COVID-19. Some of them carried the virus back to their home countries – creating one of the earliest super spreader events in the world, and explaining how countries who participated in the games had reported cases as early as November 2019.”