Commentary: Politicizing COVID-19 origin tracing will only hinder global anti-pandemic cooperation

(Xinhua) 15:49, July 23, 2021

BEIJING, July 23 (Xinhua) -- Global cooperation on combating COVID-19 pandemic is being hampered once again by politicizing the second phase of virus origin tracing, and China resolutely opposes this.

Targeting only one country in the name of origin-tracing study will send a dangerous and irresponsible message that scientific principles can be easily distorted by power politics, seeking the truth can be disrupted by unfounded slanders, and international justice undermined by moral degradation at the cost of the health of humanity.

Earlier this year, a World Health Organization (WHO) expert team visited Wuhan in central China to carry out the virus source tracing and relevant global research jointly with Chinese experts. China did its best to organize and coordinate with relevant parties to meet the needs of the expert team.

China's action in aiding the origin-tracing efforts exemplifies its adherence to consistency, transparency and integrity.

After the visit, the expert group came to the conclusion that a laboratory incident is "extremely unlikely" to be the cause of COVID-19.

The work that has been carried out in the first phase should not be repeated, especially when a clear conclusion has already been reached. What should be done is the origin tracing of early cases, molecular epidemiology, and intermediary hosts in multiple countries and regions based on extensive consultations among WHO member states.

In the face of the raging pandemic of this scale unseen in a century, no country can be immune to its adverse effects. Only global cooperation and concerted actions can effectively curb the spread of the virus and enable people all over the world to resume a prosperous and harmonious life.

The WHO is strongly advised to seriously consider the considerations and suggestions put forward by Chinese experts, truly treat the novel coronavirus origin-tracing work as a scientific issue, get rid of political interference, and actively and prudently promote tracing work continuously in multiple countries and regions around the globe.

Only through such an approach can we find the most likely source of the virus as soon as possible and help prevent similar epidemics in the future. 

(Web editor: Xia Peiyao, Du Mingming)


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