On Wednesday, World Health Organization inspectors visited a laboratory in the Chinese city of Wuhan, in light of a controversial theory saying that the laboratory may be the source of the emergence of the Corona virus.
The inspection of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which conducts research on the most dangerous diseases in the world, is one of the most prominent stations under surveillance during the team’s investigation of the origin of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The team’s sensitive mission, which China postponed throughout the first year of the health crisis that swept the world, aims to discover how the virus was transmitted from animal to human.
But questions remain about what results the experts might reach after much time has passed.
On Wednesday morning, a convoy of cars was seen driving by the security forces to enter the virus institute.
Peter Daszak, a member of the WHO team, told reporters that the team “looks forward to a very productive day, and is asking all the questions that we know must be asked.”
Most scientists believe that Covid-19, which first appeared in Wuhan and spread until it caused the death of more than two million people around the world, originated in bats and may have been transmitted to humans through another mammal, but there is no specific answer until right Now.
WHO experts stayed inside the institute for nearly four hours, before they drove away without stopping to speak to the media that were waiting for them outside.
Police in black uniforms and masks lined up to separate crowds of journalists from cars.
The state-run Global Times newspaper said that the team also visited the B4 laboratory, the first in Asia that is extremely safe and equipped to deal with Category 4 pathogens such as Ebola.
Speculation early in the outbreak spoke of the possibility that the virus had accidentally leaked from the Wuhan Biosafety Laboratory, although there was no evidence to support this theory.
Former US President Donald Trump and his supporters took advantage of these rumors and exaggerated conspiracy theories that China had deliberately leaked the virus.
Trump’s Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, insisted last year that there was “significant evidence” indicating that the virus had come out of the laboratory, provided no evidence and acknowledged the lack of certainty.
China was criticized at home and abroad for underestimating the initial outbreak of the virus and concealing information when it first appeared in Wuhan in December 2019.
However, Daszak told reporters on Tuesday that the mission was going “very well” as the group visited an animal disease control center.
China is also focusing on its recovery from the outbreak, and the WHO team took a tour of a propaganda exhibition celebrating Chinas recovery from the epidemic in Wuhan on Saturday.
On Sunday, the team also visited the market, which witnessed one of the first reported cases in more than a year, which Daszak described in a tweet as a “critical” station.
Other stations include the hospital where some of the first cases of Coronavirus were treated.
Shi Qingli, one of the leading Chinese experts on bat viruses and deputy director of the Wuhan Laboratory, raised some eyebrows during an interview with Scientific American in June 2020, in which she said she was initially concerned about whether The virus had leaked from the laboratory.
However, later tests revealed that no genetic sequences of the viruses in the laboratory matched, Shi said.
She later added that she would “bet with her life that (the new Corona virus) has nothing to do with the laboratory,” according to Chinese state media.