U.S. intelligence agencies don’t believe the Covid-19 coronavirus was created by humans or genetically modified in China, a controversial finding that comes as President Donald Trump increasingly tries to pin blame on Beijing for the global pandemic.
The intelligence community “concurs with the wide scientific consensus that the Covid-19 virus was not man made or genetically modified,” according to a statement from the DNI office on Thursday.
The statement goes on to say the nation’s intelligence community “will continue to rigorously examine emerging information and intelligence to determine whether the outbreak began through contact with infected animals or if it was the result of an accident at a laboratory in Wuhan,” referring to the Chinese city where the virus was first reported.
The findings come as Trump ratchets up pressure on China over its pandemic response. He said he’s ordered an investigation into how the virus emerged as conspiracy theories — some promoted by key Trump supporters — circulate suggesting that it may have been created at a lab, or escaped from one, in Wuhan. The statement Thursday suggested that probe is already underway.
On Thursday, Trump said he hadn’t yet seen the statement released by his Director of National Intelligence. Trump said his administration continues to investigate the origin of the new virus and he said he’d have “a very good answer eventually.”
Asked by a reporter what gives Trump confidence that the Wuhan lab is responsible for the virus, the president responded, “I can’t tell you that. I’m not allowed to tell you that.”
Subscribe to our YouTube channel: https://bit.ly/2TwO8Gm
QUICKTAKE ON SOCIAL:
Follow QuickTake on Twitter: twitter.com/quicktake
Like QuickTake on Facebook: facebook.com/quicktake
Follow QuickTake on Instagram: instagram.com/quicktake
Subscribe to our newsletter: https://bit.ly/2FJ0oQZ
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
QuickTake by Bloomberg is a global news network delivering up-to-the-minute analysis on the biggest news, trends and ideas for a new generation of leaders.
In This Story: Beijing
Beijing, China’s sprawling capital, has history stretching back 3 millennia. Yet it’s known as much for modern architecture as its ancient sites such as the grand Forbidden City complex, the imperial palace during the Ming and Qing dynasties.
2 Recent Items: Beijing
In This Story: China
7 Recent Items: China
In This Story: COVID-19
Covid-19 is the official WHO name given to the novel coronavirus which broke out in late 2019 and began to spread in the early months of 2020.
Symptoms of coronavirus
The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
- a persistent new cough (non productive, dry)
- a high temperature (e.g. head feels warm to the touch)
- shortness of breath (if this is abnormal for the individual, or increased)
Latest News about Covid-19
Below are stories from around the globe related to the 2020 outbreak of novel Coronavirus – since the WHO gave the Covid-19 naming. Most recent items are posted nearest the top.
5 Recent Items: COVID-19
In This Story: Donald Trump
Donald John Trump is the 45th and current president of the United States. Before entering politics, he was a businessman and television personality. Trump was born and raised in Queens, a borough of New York City, and received a bachelor’s degree in economics from the Wharton School.