|Posted by JJ The Psychotherapist on May 20, 2021 at 2:40 PM|
Republicans on the House Intelligence Committee claim there is "significant circumstantial evidence" that COVID-19 was first discovered as a result of a leak at China's Wuhan Institute of Virology.
In a report obtained by Fox News, the lawmakers, led by Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), the committee's top Republican, claim that China has refused to cooperate with efforts to determine where the virus originated.
They wrote in the report that “international efforts to discover the true source of the virus have been stymied by a lack of cooperation from the People's Republic of China.” “Nevertheless, significant circumstantial evidence raises serious concerns that the COVID-19 outbreak may have been a leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology.”
The military of the People's Republic of China (PRC) was also said to have had "involvement" in the lab, according to the report. The report refuted the long-held belief that the virus was spread by bats.
The lawmakers wrote, "By contrast, little circumstantial evidence has emerged to support the PRC's claim that COVID-19 was a natural occurrence, having jumped from some other species to human."
Fox noted that committee Republicans “also claimed there are ‘clear signs’ that U.S. government government agencies and academic institutions ‘may have funded or collaborated in Gain of Function research’ at the Wuhan Lab, claiming that research ‘was published even after the U.S. government had paused these kinds of studies in the United States due to ethical concerns over their biowarfare applicability and their potential to accidentally unleash a pandemic.'”
“To protect American citizens from future pandemics, the U.S. Government must place more pressure on China to allow full, credible investigations of the source of the COVID-19 pandemic and to allow probes of the likelihood that it resulted from a lab leak,” the report says. “The U.S. Government must also provide a full accounting of any American cooperation with the Wuhan lab’s coronavirus research, including the support of these projects through U.S. Government funds.”
Republicans on the committee demanded more information on COVID-19's origins from President Joe Biden and Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines on Sunday. The lawmakers claim in letters to the two officials that they have not been "open" about "what processes it undertook to make seemingly authoritative statements about the origins of the virus early in the pandemic — conclusions that are now in question."
The lawmakers write to Haines, “This casts doubt on the validity of early judgments as well as the analytic integrity of COVID-19-related intelligence reporting,”
According to the letter, “Republican Members are aware of allegations that the IC suppressed dissenting views related to the origins of the pandemic and that the community relied on ‘outside' experts with concerning yet undisclosed entanglements.”
“The letter requests that the intelligence community turn over all of its information on COVID-19's origins, including any reports on a possible 'collaboration' between the Wuhan lab and the Chinese military. According to Fox News, the request sought “any evidence intelligence agencies had to prove coronavirus broke out naturally and originated in animals.” “It also inquired if the intelligence community was involved in any reviews of ‘gain of function' research, specifically whether such research should be funded outside the United States.”
Biden and Haines will have until May 31 to deliver the information, according to the lawmakers.