WHO urges China to share raw data on early COVID-19 cases, stating that preventing future pandemics is “extremely important”


On August 12, the World Health Organization (WHO) stated that “it is very important to know how the COVID-19 pandemic began,” and provided raw data from early cases of COVID-19. He urged China to share and set an example for establishing its origins. All future animals-of human spillover events.

and statement On Thursday, WHO reiterated the importance of uncovering the origin of the virus first detected in Wuhan, China in December 2019, “everything needed to enable the next series of studies. We asked for data and access to. We started as soon as possible. “

In January 2021, a WHO-led team spent four weeks in and around Wuhan’s central city with Chinese researchers investigating the cause of the pandemic.

In March, researchers said the virus could have transmitted from bats to humans via another animal, “it was considered a very unlikely route for laboratory invasion.” Said.

However, many countries, including the United States, and some scientists questioned the findings, critics pointed out that the Chinese Communist Party administration played an important role in their investigation, and said they were once again engaged in cover-ups. Blame.

In July, WHO Executive Secretary Tedros Adanom Gebreyes told reporters that the investigation into the cause of the COVID-19 pandemic in China was hampered by a lack of raw data on the first day of infection in China. Asked for greater transparency.

Meanwhile, Danish scientist Peter Ben Enbarek, who led an international mission to Wuhan, told laboratory employees that the virus was transmitted from bats to humans while taking samples in the field. He said it falls under one of the likely hypotheses about whether it was transmitted.

Authorities called for a follow-up study of the origin of the virus, including further research in China, along with a lab audit recently rejected by Chinese authorities.

“After the publication of the WHO-China Joint Report on Phase 1 Studies on the Origin of the SARS-CoV-2 Virus in March 2021, WHO outlined the following series of studies that need to be undertaken. We continue to discuss the next steps with member states and experts, “WHO wrote in a statement Thursday.

“To move forward, WHO will work with all governments to depoliticize the situation, accelerate origin studies, and, importantly, a common framework for future emerging pathogens with potential pandemics. We ask you to work together to develop. “

The organization reiterated that investigating the origin of the virus “should not be an exercise that causes blame, pointing, or political point scoring,” and “access to data is very important for developing an understanding of science. It was important and somehow politicized. “

WHO said it is cooperating with many countries that have reported detection of SARS-CoV-2 in samples from biological specimens stored since 2019. In Italy, the results of such studies have become easier for independent assessments by international laboratories. Included a blind retest of blood samples before the pandemic.

“Sharing raw data and allowing samples to be retested in laboratories outside Italy reflects the best scientific solidarity and includes China so that research of origin can proceed quickly. It’s the same as we encourage all countries to support, and effectively, “WHO said.

The organization also said China and other member states have suggested that “origin studies have been politicized, or WHO has acted due to political pressure.”

In response, WHO stated that it reviewed Phase 1 research reports and determined that “there is insufficient scientific evidence to rule out any of the hypotheses,” especially in relation to Labreak theory. rice field.

“It’s important to have access to all the data, consider scientific best practices, and consider the mechanisms that WHO is already implementing,” the agency wrote. “WHO focuses solely on science, provides solutions and builds solidarity.”

“Analyzing and improving laboratory safety and protocols at all laboratories around the world, including China, is important to our collective biosafety and security.”

Chinese officials rejected the idea that the virus came from the laboratory and claimed to have caused a natural jump from animals to humans.

On Friday, China also called for a new call from the World Health Organization for raw data to virus origin, saying it supported “scientific” efforts rather than “political” efforts to find out how the virus began. Refused.

“We oppose political pursuits … and abandon the joint report issued” from the WHO team’s visit to Wuhan in January, Deputy Foreign Minister Ma Zhaoxu told reporters. “We support scientific tracking.”

Ma also rejected the proposal for a new research line.

“The conclusions and recommendations of the WHO-China joint report have been recognized by the international community and the scientific community,” he said.

“Future global traceability work needs to be done further based on this report and can be done instead of starting a new report.”

Catabella Roberts