COVID-19 likely resulted from an accidental leak at a laboratory in Wuhan, China, and triggered the start of the pandemic earlier in 2019 than Chinese government officials claimed, according to a Senate report released today.
The report noted multiple ongoing biosafety lapses that occurred early in 2019 at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV), where Chinese and U.S. researchers were conducting gain-of-function research.
It also documented efforts led by the Chinese military to develop a COVID-19 vaccine at the lab weeks before China admitted the virus first emerged in Wuhan.
Sen. Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-Kan.) — the member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions who released the report — said in a press release:
“A preponderance of evidence in this report suggests there were two separate unintentional lab leaks dating back to fall of 2019 in Wuhan, China with significant evidence supporting that COVID-19 was a lab-created and altered virus.”
The 300-page report, “Muddy Waters: The Origins of COVID-19 Report,” contains more than 1,500 citations to corroborate its findings. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) who served as minority leader of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, requested the committee compile the report.
This news comes after FBI Director Christopher Wray on March 1 confirmed that the FBI has long believed COVID-19 originated at a Chinese government lab.
— FBI (@FBI) March 1, 2023
Biosafety issues at Wuhan lab peaked in summer and fall of 2019
The report documented coronavirus-related animal experiments conducted at the WIV in 2018 and 2019.
It found there were “three laboratory accidents involving SARS-CoV-2 since the pandemic began.”
“It is clear that the convergence of sophisticated coronavirus research, government demands for scientific breakthroughs, and biosafety problems at the WIV appear to have peaked in the late-summer or early-fall 2019,” the Senate investigators said….