China urges relevant parties to stop political manipulation on the COVID-19 origin tracing issue, stop using the issue to shift blame, and stop sabotaging international origin tracing research cooperation, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said in a statement issued on Thursday.
The spokesperson made the remarks after 44 countries on Thursday submitted a joint letter to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. Four other countries wrote separate letters, on the COVID-19 origin tracing issue.
They welcomed the joint WHO-China study on COVID-19 origin tracing, stressing that virus origin tracing is a scientific task and opposed attempts at politicizing the issue.
The countries in the letter called on the WHO Secretariat to cooperate with member States to promote global origin tracing research in accordance with relevant resolutions of the World Health Assembly.
The spokesperson said a joint report on origin tracing of COVID-19 issued following a 28-day joint study carried out in China by international experts and their Chinese counterparts in March has laid a sound foundation for advancing global origins tracing.
“China’s open and transparent attitude on tracing the origins of the virus has also been fully recognized by international experts,” the spokesperson added.
The ministry also condemned a few countries led by the United States for stigmatizing the pandemic, labeling the virus and politicizing the origin tracing.
“They blatantly disregard the achievements scientists made together and turn a blind eye to science and truth for their own selfish interests. They publicly clamor for investigations conducted by intelligence agencies and falsely accuse China of not being transparent and cooperative by all means regardless of the facts,” the spokesperson said. “These actions have seriously disrupted and undermined international cooperation in global origins study, created great difficulties and obstacles for countries to fight the pandemic and save lives, and aroused wide dissatisfaction and opposition in the international community.”
In an article published on The Korea Times, Sun Yi urged to take the origin tracing of the COVID-19 virus as a scientific issue rather than a geopolitical game.
“The joint WHO-China investigation should be respected,” Sun said, adding that the report comes from the joint World Health Organization-China investigation team that supported the natural outbreak theory and clearly stressed it was “extremely unlikely” that the COVID-19 virus leaked from a Chinese lab.
Sun also noted that if new worldwide tracing is indeed necessary, the primary focus should be on America instead of China.