Saturday, July 13, 2024
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JOHANNESBURG - Chinese Ambassador to South Africa, Chen Xiaodong, has described America's search for the origin of the COVID-19 virus as a "witch hunt".

China has repeatedly denied allegations that it manufactured or leaked the virus from a lab in Wuhan before it spread to the rest of the world.

Former US President Donald Trump is seen to have fuelled this lab-leak theory but Xiaodong said that America was trying to make China appear guilty for creating the devastating pandemic.

Ambassador Xiaodong said that his country had nothing to hide.

"What they want from all of these is to use origin tracing to smear and attack China and to increase bargaining power with China," the ambassador said.

Last week, a classified US intelligence report was delivered to the White House which was inconclusive on the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to US media reports, that was because of a lack of information from China.

President Joe Biden ordered this assessment more than 90 days ago and parts of the report could be declassified in the coming days.

The World Health Organization (WHO) visited Wuhan in January this year to produce the first phase of its report into origin tracing but failed to conclude where the virus came from.

The WHO has urged China to share the raw data to revive its probe into the origins of the virus.


Mia Lindeque


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