Groundwork for COVID origin probe in China concludes, says WHO Chief

Srinagar: The United Nations health agency on Monday said that the World Health Organisation’s mission in China laying the groundwork for investigating the origin of deadly coronavirus, has concluded.

On July 10, a team consisting of an epidemiologist and an animal health specialist was sent to Beijing by the UN health agency to lay the groundwork for a probe aimed at identifying how the virus entered the human species, a report published by a Delhi based newspaper Hindustan Times said.

According to a statement by WHO, the organisations’ chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual press conference that investigation in China has completed.

“The WHO advance team that travelled to China has now concluded their mission to lay the groundwork for further joint efforts to identify the virus origins,” he said.

He said that WHO and Chinese experts have drafted the terms of reference for the studies and programme of work for an international team.

Scientists believe the killer virus jumped from animals to humans, possibly from a market in the city of Wuhan selling exotic animals for meat.

In another report by WHO, the organisation warned that there might never be a “silver bullet” for the new coronavirus, despite the rush to discover effective vaccines.

In order to suppress the pandemic, the organization urged the governments all over world and citizens to focus on doing the known basics, such as testing, contact tracing, maintaining physical distance and wearing a mask.

“We all hope to have a number of effective vaccines that can help prevent people from infection,” Ghebreyesus said during a virtual press conference.


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