Lexington-Fayette, Kentucky 2021-01-14 07:28:40 –
Wuhan, China — A global team of researchers has arrived in a Chinese city where the coronavirus pandemic was first detected amid uncertainty about whether Beijing would try to prevent embarrassing discoveries.
10 of the members of the team were sent to Wuhan by the World Health Organization, after a diplomatic dispute of several months that caused the complaints of abnormal citizens by the head of the WHO, was approved by the government of Xi Jinping president.
Scientists suspect that the virus, which has killed more than 1.9 million people since late 2019, may have jumped into humans from bats and other animals. Beijing has been plagued by accusations of allowing the disease to spread and says the virus came from abroad, but foreign scientists say it’s unlikely.
The 15-member team includes scientists from the United States, Australia, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, Russia, the Netherlands, Qatar and Vietnam. According to a WHO statement, two members have been infected with COVID-19 in Singapore and are being quarantined there. The other 13 members need to be quarantined for two weeks after arriving in Wuhan.
A spokesman for the Chinese government said he would “exchange views” with WHO scientists, but did not say whether he would allow them to collect evidence, according to the Associated Press.