|Chinese FM Spokesperson:Why Can't Origins Study Be Conducted in the US Just as in China?|
At a regular press conference of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People's Republic of China on 19 July, spokesperson Zhao Lijian answered a question about Chinese netizens’ call on the WHO to investigate Fort Detrick lab and other labs in the US that have the risk of virus leak.
Journalist: In June this year, a group of Chinese netizens drafted a joint open letter to ask the WHO to investigate the Fort Detrick labd. On July 17, they entrusted the Global Times with posting the letter to solicit a public response to call on the WHO to investigate Fort Detrick lab and other labs in the US that have the risk of virus leak. Do you have any comment?
Zhao Lijian: I noted relevant reports. As of 3 p.m. this afternoon, over 750,000 Chinese netizens have signed the letter, calling for a thorough probe into Fort Detrick lab to find the truth of coronavirus. The number of co-signers is soaring as we speak. I also noted that huanqiu.com conducted an online survey about where the next-stage investigation should be. Over 90 percent of the respondents believed the next-phase investigation should be carried out in the US. You may have a look at that.
These actions initiated by the pubic and media in fact have raised those questions long hovering over the mind of all, which the US has kept in dark. Here are questions for the US to answer: What is the link between Fort Detrick and the unexplained outbreaks of respiratory disease including EVALI? Why hasn't the US invited the WHO in for an investigation into Fort Detrick? Why can’t origins study be conducted in the US just as in China? The US should show transparency and tell as much as they know about all the questions and respond to the concerns of the outside world.
In recent days, 54 countries sent a letter to the WHO Director General on the issue of origin-tracing, stressing the importance of adopting science-based approach and rejecting political manipulation. Origin-tracing is a scientific matter, the second phase of which requires study in multiple places around the world by scientists. Any attempt to peddle intelligence-led origin-tracing in disregard of science and truth, and coerce experts and scholars in pursuit of one’s selfish interests will only disrupt global anti-epidemic cooperation, meet with strong opposition from the international community, and lead to nowhere.
Nothing will prevail over the will of the people. It has long been known to all that the US is trying to engage in political manipulation and shift blame to China. The US should heed the calls of the the Chinese people and the rest of the international community, and respond squarely to the open letter and the online poll.