World health official says Corona virus most likely came from animals. The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday that all available evidence suggests the novel Corona virus originated in animals in China late last year and was not manipulated or produced in a laboratory.
Speaking at a news conference in Geneva, WHO spokeswoman Fadela Chaib said:All available evidence suggests the virus has an animal origin and is not a manipulated or constructed virus in a lab or somewhere else. Chaib added, “It is probable, likely that the virus is of animal origin,” and noted that an intermediate animal host “certainly” held the virus before its transmission to humans. It is very important to continue what we are doing not only for COVID but for many, many, many, many other health programmes,” she added, referring to action against polio, HIV and malaria among other diseases.
She did not respond to a request to elaborate on whether the infection may have inadvertently escaped from a lab. The Wuhan Institute of Virology has dismissed rumors both that it synthesized the virus or allowed it to survive.
She said that the WHO was 81 percent funded for the next two years as of the end of March, referring to its $4.8 billion biennial budget. The United States is the Geneva-based agency’s biggest donor. Other significant contributors are the Gates Foundation and Britain.
The announcement from the WHO comes after U.S. intelligence officials announced last week that they were looking into whether the Corona virus could have accidentally emerged from a Wuhan lab that was studying viruses in bats.
Regardless of its origins, the absolute facts of the matter are that COVID-19 has infected over 2.5 million people worldwide to date. America is by far the most-infected country, with over 787,000 confirmed cases, according to John Hopkins data. Spain is a distant second, with over 204,000 cases. For more health news click here.