The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) says the U.S. Intelligence Community has determined that the virus started in China, and it agrees that the virus was not man-made or genetically modified.
However, in an interview on ABC News’ “This Week” on Sunday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that there is plenty of evidence that the virus originated in a lab in China. He said, “There’s enormous evidence that that’s where it began.”
He continued, “We have said from the beginning, that this was a virus that originated in Wuhan, China. We took a lot of grief for that from the outset. But I think the whole world can see now.”
“Remember, China has a history of infecting the world, and they have a history of running sub-standard laboratories. These are not the first times that we have had the world exposed to viruses as a result of failures in a Chinese lab,” Pompeo added.
Watch the video below:
Last week the ODNI released a rare statement on its investigation of the origins of the coronavirus, “The entire Intelligence Community has been consistently providing critical support to U.S. policymakers and those responding to the COVID-19 virus, which originated in China.”
The statement also said that the intelligence community agrees with the “wide scientific consensus” that the virus was not man-made or genetically modified.
When asked about the intelligence community’s statement about the origins, Pompeo said, “I’ve seen what the intelligence community has said. I have no reason to believe that they’ve got it wrong.”
He continued to slam the Chinese Communist Party and accused it of covering up information about the virus which he said allowed it to spread around the world. He also suggested that the U.S. would have been more transparent and sought advice from other world leaders about the virus if it originated within the country.
Several reports have detailed the extent China’s government reportedly went to in order to keep information about the virus a secret including detaining and censoring whistleblowers, as IJR reported.
The U.S. Intelligence Community recently reported that China “intentionally” hid information about the severity of the virus at the same time it was stockpiling personal protective equipment.
When asked if China’s government intentionally released the virus, Pompeo responded, “I don’t have anything to say about that.”
His comments come days after President Donald Trump told reporters at the White House that he had seen evidence that the virus originated in a lab. Officials told Fox News that they believe the virus originated in a lab and was released by mistake.
However, many scientists have dismissed the suggestion that the virus originated in a lab. Instead, they believe in originated in a bat and jumped to humans at a market in Wuhan, China.