Is Covid a man-made virus that was leaked from lab? Claims and counterclaims persist over origin of virus
A US-based scientist said he previously worked at the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) in China and also claimed to have stunning information about the origin of coronavirus (COVID-19). He said that the deadly virus was a "man-made virus" that escaped from the facility. But a fact-check report claims otherwise.
According to the British newspaper The Sun, researcher Andrew Huff claimed in his book 'The Truth About Wuhan' that Covid was released from WIV, a state-funded and operated research centre, two years ago.
Meanwhile, a fact-check by RMIT University in Australia stated that the scientist who made the controversial and unproven claims about the origin of Covid did not actually work at Wuhan lab.
The report mentioned a televised interview aired by Fox News on December 7, when he was introduced as "a scientist who actually worked inside the Wuhan lab".
In his response, Huff replied that "there's one thing I'd like to clear up here real quickly, I never stepped foot in China, I never actually worked at the Wuhan Institute of Virology."
Huff worked for the US-based scientific research group, EcoHealth Alliance between 2014 and 2016. EcoHealth Alliance even told RMIT FactLab in an email that Huff was hired as a senior research scientist, before a change of title to associate vice president in 2015.
After his claims, EcoHealth Alliance issued a statement on December 5. The group rejected the reports that he had worked at the Wuhan lab. In the statement, it noted: "Mr Huff was employed by the EcoHealth Alliance from 2014 to 2016."
"However, reports that he worked at or with the Wuhan Institute of Virology during that time are untrue. He was assigned to a completely different project working on computer-based algorithms to assess emerging disease threats," it added.
"Mr. Huff was employed by the EcoHealth Alliance from 2014 to 2016. However, reports that he worked at or with the Wuhan Institute of Virology during that time are untrue. He was assigned to a completely different project working on computer-based algorithms to assess emerging disease threats."
Mr. Huff claims that SARS-CoV-2 emerged as a lab leak from the Wuhan Institute of Virology based on research conducted there on bat coronaviruses and, further, that this research was related to U.S. intelligence gathering efforts. This is not true.
Huff alleged that the pandemic was brought on by the US government's funding of coronaviruses in China in his most recent book, "The Truth About Wuhan." Huff's book excerpts have appeared in the UK tabloid The Sun.
According to the New York Post, Huff argues in his book that China's gain-of-function tests were carried out with insufficient security, which led to a leak at the Wuhan facility.