Asked by a reporter about the possibility of investigating China’s role in the start of the pandemic –the virus is believed to have begun in the city of Wuhan– and even of seeking reparations from its government, Jenrick answered: “There will come a time when we will want to analyze the origins of the virus in detail and consider the actions of other countries, but that’s not now.”
While the statement leaves open the potential for a strained relationship between the UK and China, the tone is nowhere near as harsh as that of Britain’s ally America.
US, on the contrary, is not wasting any timehttps://t.co/PTP2RmOBqh
— RT UK (@RTUKnews) May 3, 2020
US President Donald Trump has recently made it clear on multiple occasions he sees China as partly responsible for the spread of the virus, blaming the Chinese government for not acting and warning other countries quickly enough.
Trump even suggested on Thursday he has seen evidence that the virus began in a Chinese laboratory, a statement that has fueled conspiracy theories.
The Wuhan Institute of Virology: Main focus of controversy
The Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) was established in 1956. It is the only institute specializing in virology, viral pathology, and virus technology among 19 other biological and biomedical research institutes in CAS.
Different types of viruses are being examined at this lab, which makes it highly sensitive. The coronavirus is believed to have emerged from this lab as the US is trying to tie the origin of the outbreak to this lab.
"Wuhan Institute of Virology has been engaged in so-called "gain of function" (GOF) research … used to turn viruses into human pathogens capable of causing a global pandemic."
Thank you, Newsweek, for confirming what I have been saying for two months
— StevenWMosher (@StevenWMosher) April 28, 2020
A fringe theory suggests that the new coronavirus leaked by accident from a lab in Wuhan.
Researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) study infectious diseases, including coronaviruses, and did before the pandemic started. So as questions about how the pandemic started to continue to go unanswered, the lab has drawn scrutiny.
The WIV houses China’s only Biosafety-level-4 laboratory. Scientists study the most dangerous and infectious microbes known to humankind in these types of facilities.
Some of the institute’s researchers, including virologist Shi Zhengli, have collected, sampled, and studied coronaviruses that circulate Chinese bats.
In 2013, Shi and her collaborators pinpointed the bat population most likely responsible for spreading SARS, in the Shitou Cave near Kunming.
Therefore, this Wuhan lab is the main focus of controversy throughout the coronavirus epidemic. Although no evidence has been provided yet to back up these claims, the Chinese Government is not allowing any inspection of this lab which can make the investigation process further easy and manageable.
Though the UK Housing Minister would not say what the evidence was, the president doubled down on his criticism of both Beijing and the World Health Organization, which he described as the “public relations agency for China.”
The UK will soon be easing back lockdown restrictions when Prime Minister Boris Johnson introduces a “road map” plan next week.
The country recently celebrated hitting the milestone of administering over 100,000 Covid-19 tests and Johnson has promised citizens the country is on a “downward slope” when it comes to the pandemic.
This is despite doubts cast on the method the promised number of tests was achieved, with a report by the Health Service Journal suggesting the government now counts all the tests that have been mailed out – but not necessarily completed and mailed back – in the official stats.
The country has suffered over 28,000 deaths from the virus and had over 182,000 confirmed cases
RT with additional input from GVS News Desk.