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Covid-19: WHO boss wants an investigation into a possible virus leak from a Chinese lab


Although his experts make it the “least likely” lead, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says he wants to explore all the possibilities.

The coronavirus crisis questions, sometimes arouses fantasies, and the mystery remains unsolved more than a year later.

The WHO boss on Tuesday called for a new investigation with specialized experts on the hypothesis of a leak of the virus that caused the Covid-19 pandemic from a laboratory in China and criticized the lack of access to raw data international experts.

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Although experts, who investigated the origin of the virus in January and February in China, considered the hypothesis of a laboratory leak to be the least likely, "It requires further investigation, probably with new missions with specialized experts that I am ready to deploy, ”assured Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during the briefing he gave to member countries on the report officially published on Tuesday.

The cat and the rabbit are also on the suspect list

Its authors judge the transmission of the virus to humans by an intermediate animal "probable to very probable", while the hypothesis of a laboratory incident is on the contrary qualified as "extremely improbable".

The study favors the generally accepted theory of the natural transmission of the virus from a reservoir animal (probably the bat) to humans, through another animal not yet identified.

Among the suspects are the domestic cat, rabbit or mink, or the pangolin or badger-ferret.

However, direct transmission of the virus via the reservoir animal is considered “possible to probable” by experts.

They also do not rule out the hypothesis of transmission by frozen meat - a path favored by Beijing -, deeming this scenario "possible".

The report recommends continuing studies on the basis of these three hypotheses, but however brushes aside the possibility of transmission to humans during a laboratory accident.

A theory that Professor Etienne Decroly, virologist at the CNRS, called to examine last November in our columns.

Press briefing by the international team studying the origins of the # COVID19 virus

- World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) March 30, 2021

The Director General of the WHO, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, and the President of the European Council Charles Michel are also due on Tuesday to present a draft "international treaty on pandemics" aimed at better facing the inevitable health crises to come.

“There will be other pandemics and other large-scale health emergencies.

No government or multilateral organization can face this threat on its own, ”underline the leaders of some twenty countries in an article published Tuesday in many international dailies.

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Among the signatories are French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, or even South Korean Presidents Moon Jae-in, South African Cyril Ramaphosa, Indonesian Joko Widodo and Chilean Sebastian Piñera.

A treaty "should lead to greater mutual accountability and sharing of responsibilities" and "promote transparency and cooperation within the international system", they say, calling for "learning lessons" from Covid-19 and work with civil society and the private sector.

Source: leparis

All life articles on 2021-03-30

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