WHO says Covid origin investigation is being ‘poisoned by politics’

Executive Director of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) emergencies program Mike Ryan speaks at a news conference on the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in Geneva, Switzerland.
Denis Balibouse | Reuters

A top World Health Organization official said Friday that investigations into the origins of Covid-19 are being “poisoned by politics.”

U.D. President Joe Biden announced Wednesday that he’s ordered intelligence agencies to conduct “a report on their most up-to-date analysis of the origins of Covid-19, including whether it emerged from human contact with an infected animal or from a laboratory accident.”

The WHO has been coming under increasing pressure in recent days from U.S. and European officials to take another look at whether the coronavirus could have escaped from a lab in Wuhan, China after previously undisclosed U.S. intelligence report came to light, revealing that three researchers sought hospital care after falling ill with Covid-like symptoms in November 2019.

Dr. Mike Ryan, executive director of WHO’s Health Emergency Program, asked if countries could separate the politics from the science.

“Putting WHO in a position like it has been put in is very unfair to the science we’re trying to carry out, and it puts us as an organization, frankly, in an impossible position to deliver the answers that the world wants,” Ryan said at a press briefing.

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