‘Covid Was Not Manmade’: Last And Only Foreign Scientist In Wuhan Lab Speaks Out
The only foreign scientist to work in China’s notorious Wuhan lab before the pandemic has said she does not believe Covid was manmade.
Australian diseases expert Danielle Anderson was the first person from abroad to carry out research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology – and left just before the pandemic took hold.
Her last stint ended in November 2019, giving her a rare insider’s look into a place that has become the epicentre of debate around the origins of the virus.
With the institute – which studies SARS viruses like Covid – located in the same city where the first cases were recorded, there have long been suspicions that the bug was leaked.
And China’s lack of transparency since the start of the outbreak has fueled conspiracy theories that Covid could even have been created in the lab in a botched experiment.
But Danielle, an expert in bat-borne diseases, says she feels certain that the bug is a “naturally acquired infection” from somewhere.
Speaking out for the first time, she explained that she does not believe the virus was “man-made” by scientists – and it may even have originated outside of Wuhan.
Danielle, 42, told Bloomberg News that she would not “rule out” the possibility that Covid may have escaped from a lab accidentally but added that included “any lab worldwide”.
She said: “SARS has escaped from at least four labs and so I’m not naive enough to say I absolutely write [that] off. Whether the virus is engineered and then released, that’s a very different scenario and that I don’t believe.
“I still believe it was a naturally acquired infection somewhere. Whether or not that was originally in Wuhan I don’t know – maybe that’s just where the clusters were first seen – but I do believe its a natural occurrence.”
Danielle added that the lab has high standards of sterilisation, including using special types of disinfectants on a daily basis.
It comes as Beijing faces accusations from the US of an orchestrated cover-up after it refused to allow international scientists into Wuhan to investigate the bug.
British intelligence operatives also reportedly now believe it is “feasible” the pandemic began with a leak from the lab.