World Health Organization says virus origins report will be released on Tuesday

Representational image of a bat| Pixabay

The scientists suggested future studies take a wider geographical approach, including Southeast Asia, and investigate susceptible animal species more closely.

In a press conference held Tuesday following the release of the report, Dr. Thea Fisher said the investigation is the first step in a long journey into discovering the origins of the virus. Possible host species include mink, pangolins, rabbits and ferret badgers, the report said.

Arguments for "Although rare, laboratory accidents do happen", the report said. "From what I've seen, there was nothing shocking and unexpected in there".

The United States led a chorus of concern from a group of nations on Tuesday over a WHO-backed report into the origins of the coronavirus in China, with accusations swirling that Beijing failed to give proper access to the investigators.

The possibility Covid-19 was developed in a lab could not be ruled out by a global investigation team, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.

An worldwide group of experts wrote an open letter March 4, questioning the United Nations agency's investigations and calling for a fresh probe.

Arguments against "There is no conclusive evidence for foodborne transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and the probability of a cold-chain contamination with the virus from a reservoir is very low", the report said. It was agreed that World Health Organization would select the global scientists. Topping the list was the transmission from bats through another animal, which they said was likely to very likely.

"A laboratory origin of the pandemic was considered to be extremely unlikely", it said.

Samples from bats and other animals in China didn't test positive for the pandemic virus.


The report revealed that the virus began spreading for not over a month or two before it was finally detected in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. State media has claimed that the virus may have arrived in Wuhan on frozen food imports .

"Genome analysis reveals that bats may be the source of SARS-CoV-2", said the report.

The market was an early suspect because some stalls sold a range of unusual animals, and some wondered if they had brought the new virus to Wuhan.

Bats are known to carry coronaviruses and scientists have found the closest relative of the new coronavirus in bats in China. Tedros said that further study will be important to identify what role farmed wild animals might have played in introducing the virus to markets in Wuhan and beyond.

"Many of the early cases were associated with the Huanan market, but a similar number of cases were associated with other markets and some were not associated with any markets".

However, the research center didn't report any disruptions or incidents that would have been caused by the move, and it wasn't storing or testing coronaviruses or bat viruses ahead of the outbreak, the report said.

A woman adjusts her glasses in Wuhan, the epicenter of China's coronavirus outbreak, in March 2020. "By doing this, isn't the USA trying to exert political pressure on the members of the World Health Organization expert group?" Ahead of its release, senior USA officials, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken, expressed concern about content and framing of the report, saying Beijing "helped to write it".

Tuesday's report nearly totally rules out the laboratory leak hypothesis, which alleges that the virus escaped or was released from a research facility. It's unclear how much the report's findings may persuade people convinced that the virus spread from a laboratory.

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