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By Saradha | Apr 21, 2020 06:24 PM

A High- safety bio security laboratory in China’s Wuhan is now being subjected to scrutiny by US, who claim that this could have been COVID- 19' s place of origin. 

Did Corona Virus LEAK from a Chinese Virus Bank?

Chinese scientists have told in the past that the virus originated from bats and jumped to humans in a market that sold animals in Wuhan but the emergence of this lab into the limelight, has led to heated debates and conspiracy theories about the lab being the source of the virus. 

The China Centre for virus culture collection, one of the largest virus collection labs in Asia is a part of this biosafety Laboratory. The lab is equipped to deal with class 4 pathogens (dangerous viruses that could pose a high risk of person to person transmission and cause diseases like Ebola). 

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday that the US officials are doing a "full investigation" into how the virus "got out into the world". He said in a radio interview that "We know they've not permitted the world's scientists to go into that laboratory to evaluate what took place there, what's happening there, what's happening there even as we speak." 

The Washington Post and Fox News quoted anonymous sources who told that the virus might have accidently leaked from the lab. The US diplomatic cables revealed to The Washington Post that they were concerned about inadequate safety standards followed by researchers while handling bat coronaviruses in the lab. 

Various Conspiracy theories have surfaced online since Friday. The institute has not commented on the issue but has declined all the rumours in a statement it published in February. "A discerning person will understand at a glance that the purpose is to create confusion, divert public attention, and shirk their responsibility," said Zhao Lijian,  spokesman of Chinese foreign ministry on Friday. 

A study conducted by Chinese scientists which was published in The Lancet in January disclosed that the first Corona virus patients did not have any connections to Wuhan’s animal market. The same study also revealed that the first 13 out of 41 confirmed cases did not have any connection to the animal market as well. 

According to report from NDTV, Shi Zhengli, China’s leading experts on bat coronaviruses, said that the genome sequence of SARS-COV-2 (coronavirus) did not match any of the bat coronaviruses her laboratory had previously collected and studied. “For me, the pandemic origin is still an open question”, she was quoted by the AFP.

As the world continues to fight COVID- 19, theories and facts around the spread of the pandemic continue to unravel.

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