THE World Health Organisation (WHO) said that all available evidence suggests that the novel coronavirus originated in bats in China late last year and it was not manipulated or constructed in a lab.
US President Donald Trump said last week that his government was trying to determine whether the coronavirus emanated from a lab in Wuhan, in central China.
‘All available evidence suggests the virus has an animal origin and is not manipulated or constructed virus in a lab or somewhere else,’ WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib told a Geneva news briefing. ‘It is probable, likely that the virus is of animal origin.’
Meanwhile, the United Nations General Assembly has demanded global action to quickly scale up the development of and access to medicines, vaccines and equipment to battle the pandemic, while the WHO warned Tuesday that rushing to ease coronavirus lockdowns could lead to a resurgence of the outbreak.
The UN resolution asked Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to work with the WHO and make recommendations to ensure that all people have equitable and timely access to testing, medical supplies, drugs and future vaccines, especially in developing countries.
African officials have been outspoken about the need for medical supplies across the 54-nation continent, where health systems have historically been underfunded and will be overwhelmed by the virus.