The World Health Organization on Tuesday rejected theories that coronavirus was created in a lab, saying that all known evidence points to the pathogen emerging from animals in China late last year.
WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib said that it’s “probable, likely, that the virus is of animal origin.”
“All available evidence suggests the virus has an animal origin and is not manipulated or constructed in a lab or somewhere else,” Chaib told a Geneva news briefing.
However, she said that more research was necessary to determine how the virus jumped from animals to humans.
Bats have been eyed as one of the possible hosts of the contagion, which has been linked to the animal markets in the Chinese city of Wuhan.
“It most likely has its ecological reservoir in bats but how the virus came from bats to humans is still to be seen and discovered,” Chaib said.
The Wuhan Institute of Virology has also pushed back on suggestions that the bug accidentally spread from the facility.
“There’s no way this virus came from us,” director Yuan Zhiming told state media on Saturday.
With Post wires
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