Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying's Regular Press Conference on May 7, 2020
2020/05/07

 

CCTV: Speaking to ABC News on May 3, US Secretary of State Pompeo initially said the best experts so far seem to think the novel coronavirus was man-made and he has no reason to disbelieve that at this point. The hostess then questioned that, pointing out the office of the DNI says the scientific consensus was that the COVID-19 virus was not man-made or genetically modified. Confusingly, Pompeo said "that's right. I agree with that. I've seen the summary that you saw that was released publicly. I have no reason to doubt that it is accurate at this point." How do you see these contradicting remarks?

Hua Chunying: He contradicted himself because he was busy fabricating lies, telling one lie to cover up another. This is an open secret.

BBC: Also related to the comments of the US Secretary of State. Again he referred to the possibility of the lab, but specifically, Mr. Pompeo said that China has been withholding virus samples. What does the Chinese government have to say about that specific allegation?

Hua Chunying: I don't understand what he was referring to.

On the one hand he admitted that he cannot be sure the virus came from the lab in Wuhan, and on the other hand he said he had important evidence suggesting the lab may have virus samples. He also claimed that China was not transparent and could have avoided up to tens of thousands of deaths. I believe we need to present a list of facts here.

On the source of the virus, top-notch scientists around the world, including leading American scientists and experts on disease control, have said multiple times that this is an issue that should be determined based on science and facts. In the past few days, more reports have emerged on new discoveries regarding the time of the first case. Like in France, the first case has been traced back to December last year, which was caused by the virus of unknown origin inside France and different from those imported from China. The chief epidemiologist at Sweden's Public Health Agency said that it's likely that there were individual cases of coronavirus in Sweden as early as November 2019. The mayor of Belleville, New Jersey, the US admitted that he was infected with COVID-19 last November. Cases were confirmed in Florida last November but none of these 171 patients traveled to China before that. When scientists are busy doing their job, Pompeo has been trying so hard to spread the words that the virus came from a lab in Wuhan. Where is the evidence? Please show us. Perhaps he is still busy fabricating it?

Maybe he doesn't know that the Wuhan P4 laboratory was born out of cooperation between the Chinese and French governments, that its design, construction and management all follow international standards, that its first group of researchers were trained at P4 labs in France and the US, and its facilities and equipment are tested annually by third party accredited by the state. Committed to timely and openly sharing scientific and research information, the P4 laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), as one of the several dozens of P4 labs around the world, has been carrying out cooperation and exchanges with others. Last year, it received over 70 visits by foreign scholars. Their platform of 2019 Novel Coronavirus Resource has been accessed over 600,000 times and its data downloaded over 21 million times. Peter Daszak, president of EcoHealth Alliance and prominent virus expert who has been cooperating with the WIV for 15 years, said on an April 26 interview that the Wuhan lab does not have the virus that could trigger the outbreak.

In response to those who accuse China of delays and cover-ups which led to the spread, we have talked about China's COVID-19 response in the form of a timeline many times. Facts are clear and simple. Nature magazine on May 4 published a study result by scientists from China, the UK, the US and other countries. It shows that without non-pharmaceutical interventions by China, the number of infected people would have been 67 times bigger than that which actually occurred. I read another article today which is thought-provoking for me and I feel like sharing with you here. It is an opinion piece written by Jeffrey D. Sachs, an award-winning economist and also director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University, criticizing the US government's senseless logic to blame China and the subsequent consequences. He said that the big lie of the US administration is that China is the cause of America's problems, which recalls the McCarthy era. He ends the article with the question "You have done enough. Have you no shame?", a question echoed by many with a sense of justice in China and around the world.

As you may know, when Wuhan was