New Delhi: A former Chinese virologist from Hong Kong Dr Li-Meng Yan has claimed that the SARS-CoV-2 virus was developed in a government laboratory in Wuhan and also said that she has evidence to back the claim, in an interview with UK channel ITV.
In the channel’s ‘Loose Women’ segment, Li-Meng maintained that the virus is a “highly mutant” one and that the Wuhan seafood market and the other intermediate hosts of the virus were just a “smokescreen”.
‘Loose Women’ is a weekly chat show where women from different fields are called to discuss their work.
In the chat show, Li-Meng said the virus was not “from nature”. “This is based on the China Military Institute that discovered and owned some bad coronavirus named CC45 and ZXC41. Based on that, after lab modification, it became a novel virus.”
She added, “The genome sequence is like a human fingerprint, so based on this you can recognise, identify these things. So, I used the evidence that exists in the genome sequence of SARS-CoV-2 to tell people why this has come from China and why they are the only ones to make it.”
Li-Meng also revealed that there are two reports which support her claim and said that one of them will be published in “several days”, which will reveal all the scientific evidence to prove that the virus is man-made.
Earlier in July 2020 as well, in an interview to Fox News, Li-Meng had claimed that the Chinese authorities knew about the coronavirus outbreak in December last year yet they chose to remain silent about it.
Furthermore, she had added that her own institute, the School of Public Health in University of Hong Kong, which was also affiliated with the World Health Organization (WHO), had asked her to stay silent about it.
‘Authorities forced my family to say I don’t exist’
In December 2019, Li-Meng was assigned to a team that was undertaking a “secret investigation” about the outbreak in Wuhan.
She explained, “When I found the reality of the outbreak, I reported it to my supervisor who is a WHO consultant but there was no response from the WHO.” She claimed that people also asked her to keep silent.
Then, on 17 January, Li-Meng broke her silence and contacted a Chinese YouTuber based in the US.
During the interview with ITV, she also revealed the details of how the Chinese authorities “targeted” her and tried to make her “disappear” after she broke her silence.
“This is common sense for Chinese people under the China government. They studied all my information. They recruited people like cyber military to spread rumours around me for example. They also said that I am a liar and that I don’t know anything,” Li-Meng said.
“They controlled my friends, they controlled my family and said threatening things. Finally, all of them had to admit that I didn’t exist,” she added.
Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it
India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.
But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.
ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.