torsdag 16. april 2020

Trump fans flames of Chinese lab coronavirus theory during daily briefing

Donald Trump has fuelled a media theory that the coronavirus pandemic began when the pathogen accidentally escaped a Chinese laboratory, teasing that “more and more we’re hearing the story”. The US president’s TV network of choice, Fox News, has reported that “multiple sources” in the American government believe initial transmission of the virus was bat-to-human in a virology lab in Wuhan. Due to weak safety protocols, an infected lab worker then went to a wet market where the virus spread. When Fox News reporter John Roberts put this to Trump at a press briefing on Wednesday, he replied: “Well, I don’t want to say that John, but I will tell you more and more we’re hearing the story.”

The president is notorious for recycling content from Fox News in his remarks or tweets, and it was unclear whether he was privy to any other information to back the claim. He added: “We’ll see. When you say ‘multiple sources’, now there’s a case where you can use the word ‘sources’. But we are doing a very thorough examination of this horrible situation that happened.”

Trump added that he did not want to disclose any discussions he had with the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, about the laboratory.