by WorldTribune Staff, April 18, 2021
As evidence mounts that Covid-19 escaped from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) announced it is constructing more than 90 additional bio labs.
The CCP’s Ministry of Science and Technology announced this week that the country is constructing three additional biosafety level-4 labs and 88 biosafety level-3 labs.
Related: Reporter’s early scoop on Covid origins branded ‘false’ for over a year, February 24, 2021
A biosafety level (BSL), or pathogen/protection level, is a set of biocontainment precautions required to isolate dangerous biological agents in an enclosed laboratory facility.
The levels of containment range from the lowest biosafety level 1 (BSL-1) to the highest at level 4 (BSL-4).
The announcement came from China mouthpiece Global Times which cited Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Xiang Libin.
Several scientists, including former Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Robert Redfield, support theories that Covid-19 escaped from the Wuhan lab.
In a Feb. 23 op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and his former principal China policy adviser Miles Yu noted that “the Chinese Communist Party is obsessed with viruses. Its army of scientists claim to have discovered almost 2,000 new viruses in a little over a decade. It took the past 200 years for the rest of the world to discover that many. More troubling is the party’s negligence on biosafety. The costs and the risk to world health are enormous, as evidenced by a novel coronavirus that escaped Wuhan. This situation can’t continue. The world must hold the Chinese Communist Party accountable and punish Beijing if it fails to uphold global biosafety standards, including basic transparency requirements.”
Evidence that the coronavirus came from Wuhan “is enormous,” Pompeo and Yu said, adding, “and most signs point to the Wuhan Institute of Virology as the source.”
In 2018, two State Department cables warned of biosafety problems at the Wuhan lab.
The cables predicted that SARS-CoV-2’s ACE2 receptor, identified by scientists at the Wuhan lab, would enable human-to-human transmission.
Yuan Zhiming, then director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology’s biosafety level 4 lab, warned: “The biosafety laboratory is a double-edge sword: It can be used for the benefit of humanity, but can also lead to a disaster.”
Yuan listed the shortfalls prevalent among China’s biology labs, including a lack of “operational technical support, professional instructions” and “feasible standards for the safety requirements of different protection zones and for the inoculation of microbiological animals and equipment.”
Several Chinese bloggers allege that the Wuhan lab’s virus-carrying animals are sold as pets. Other animals from the lab may even be sold at local wet markets, the bloggers say.
After the Wuhan outbreak, one since-disappeared blogger asked a Wuhan Institute of Virology researcher to debate the lab’s biosafety practices in public. The offer was ignored.