WHO says evidence shows coronavirus likely came from a bat, not a lab

The World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Tuesday evidence suggests that the coronavirus originated in bats in China in late 2019 and it was not manipulated or constructed in a laboratory, Reuters reported.

All available evidence suggests the coronavirus originated in bats and was not a “laboratory construct”, WHO spokesperson Fadela Chaib said at a briefing in Geneva.

The WHO’s comment comes after U.S. President Donald Trump said last week that his government was trying to determine whether the pandemic originated from a lab in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

“At this stage, it is not possible to determine precisely the source of the virus which caused the Covid-19 pandemic. However, all available evidence suggests that the virus has a natural animal origin and is not a manipulated or constructed virus.” Chaib said.

“The virus most probably has its ecological reservoir in bats.”

“Many researchers have been able to look at its genomic features — and they have found that the evidence does not support the idea that the underlying virus is a laboratory construct.”

The WHO official said people should focus on facts – not “spurious theories” about the origins of the pandemic.

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