Biden administration joins other countries in criticizing WHO report about COVID origins

Biden administration joins other countries in criticizing WHO report about COVID origins
AP Photo/Evan Vucci
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The Biden administration is criticizing the lack of transparency of a World Health Organization report investigating the origins of the coronavirus causing COVID-19. The report has faced heavy condemnation due to China’s extensive input on its content and language. 

On Tuesday, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki spoke on behalf of President Joe Biden stating, "I think he believes the American people, the global community, the medical experts, the doctors — all of the people who have been working to save lives, the families who have lost loved ones — all deserve greater transparency.”

The Biden administration’s remarks follow the criticism of other United States officials who pushed back on the study, which downplays China’s involvement in the pandemic. As reported by Rebel News, some officials believe that the pandemic was the result of “gain of function” research or weaponization by the Chinese military, and likely originated from a lab in Wuhan, China. 

Psaki stated that the report is “incomplete” and lacks transparency, stating that even as U.S. experts continue to review the report, it is quite clear the report “lacks crucial data.” In the press conference, Psaki added that most of the global community agrees with the Biden administration’s criticism of the report, stating that the administration was in talks with around 20 countries to draft a joint statement. A joint statement from countries including Canada, the U.S., and the United Kingdom about concerns with the report was released Tuesday.

“It lacks access, it lacks transparency,” Psaki said. “We don’t believe in our review to date that it meets the moment — it meets the impact that this pandemic has had on the global community.”

“Has China not cooperated enough in the White House’s opinion?” a reporter asked at Tuesday’s press briefing, reported the Daily Caller

“They have not been transparent. They have not provided underlying data. That certainly doesn’t qualify as cooperation,” Psaki replied. “[The report] doesn’t lead us to any closer of an understanding or greater knowledge than we had six to nine months ago about the origins of the pandemic.”

Psaki’s remarks were echoed by WHO Director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who said that the report did not sufficiently investigate the lab-leak theory posited by U.S. investigators to make a proper determination.

“The team also visited several laboratories in Wuhan and considered the possibility that the virus entered the human population as a result of a laboratory incident,” Tedros said. “However, I do not believe that this assessment was extensive enough. Further data and studies will be needed to reach more robust conclusions.”

“Although the team has concluded that a laboratory leak is the least likely hypothesis, this requires further investigation, potentially with additional missions involving specialist experts, which I am ready to deploy,” he added.

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