A team of researchers from the World Health Organization (WHO) visited the leading virology laboratory in that city on Wednesday in Wuhan, China.


The visit is part of the enquiry into the origin of the coronavirus, which first emerged in Wuhan at the end of 2019.

The team led by virologist Ben Embarek arrived at the heavily guarded research institute at 9:30 am local time. “I’m looking forward to a productive day, meeting the people here, and asking all the important questions to ask,” said another team member from his car as it drove through the gate.

The Virology Institute in Wuhan is at the centre of several conspiracy theories claiming that the coronavirus has escaped from the lab or even been deliberately spread.

Most scientists reject that statement, but some argue that a sample of the virus taken from the wild may have infected an employee in a lab test and thus escaped.

Some scientists have called on China to release details of all the coronaviruses being studied in the lab to see if any variants resemble SARS-CoV-2, the one that caused the pandemic.

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