New Delhi: The Chinese embassy in New Delhi has weighed in on what it believes are misconceptions about the origin of Covid-19, which is believed to have begun from one of China’s “wet markets” in Wuhan.
Wet markets are bazaars that deal in exotic animals, among other things. It is widely believed the novel coronavirus responsible for the ongoing pandemic was spread from a bat host to one of the animals at the markets and then transferred to humans.
“Bats are never part of Chinese dishes. #Wuhan Huanan seafood market does not sell bats. The source and intermediate host of novel coronavirus transmission have not yet been identified. There are no so-called ‘wildlife wet markets’ in #China,” Ji Rong, spokesperson of the Chinese embassy in India, stated in a tweet series he named “Truth You Need To Know”.
#COVID19, Truth You Need to Know：3. Bats are never part of Chinese dishes. #Wuhan Huanan seafood market does not sell bats. The source & intermediate host of novel coronavirus transmission have not yet been identified. There are no so-called "wildlife wet markets" in #China.
— Ji Rong (@ChinaSpox_India) May 12, 2020
The spokesperson said while Wuhan was the first Chinese city to report Covid-19 cases, the disease may not have necessarily originated there.
She also lashed out at references to the virus as ‘China virus’ or ‘Wuhan virus’, a name also formerly patronised by US President Donald Trump, saying, “#WHO has specific rules on how to name the virus. It is irresponsible to connect the virus with Wuhan and stigmatise China.”
‘Natural in origin’
Another misconception she sought to tackle was the allegation – which again has been backed by US government officials – that coronavirus was made at the Wuhan Institute of Virology.
“All evidence shows SARS-CoV-2 is natural in origin, not man-made. #Wuhan Institute of Virology does not have capability to design or synthesise a new coronavirus. Also no evidence of pathogen leaks or staff infections in the Institute,” she added.
Earlier, the Chinese embassy had stated that any international investigation against China in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic should have a “solid basis” and that such calls for investigations are “politically driven”.
“Why is investigation only targeted at #China? Is there any evidence to show China does have problems? Why not any investigation of other countries? We oppose politically-driven investigation for purpose of stigmatising China,” she said last Thursday.