Covid-19: WHO to send a team to China to investigate the virus origin

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on June 30, 2020

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday said that it will be sending a team to China next week to better understand the origin of the virus that cause the global Covid-19 pandemic.

"Knowing the source of the virus is very, very important," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a virtual press briefing.

"We can fight the virus better when we know everything about the virus, including how it started," he said.

"We will be sending a team next week to China to prepare for that and we hope that will lead into understanding how the virus started," he added.

The WHO chief has not provided any specifics in terms of who will be on the team or what the team’s exact mission will be.

As today marks six months since the outbreak that was first reported in Wuhan, China, the UN health agency further warned about the impact of the pandemic.

“The six-month anniversary of the outbreak coincides with reaching 10 million cases and 500,000 deaths,” the WHO chief said.

“Most people remain susceptible. The virus still has a lot of room to move. We all want this to be over. We all want to get on with our lives. But the hard reality is: this is not even close to being over. Although many countries have made some progress, globally the pandemic is actually speeding up,” he added.

He further emphasized the importance of solidarity and urged countries to be bullish on research and contact tracing. He also emphasized the importance of political leadership and asked countries across the globe to further empower weaker communities in combating the outbreak.

“This is a time for renewing our commitment to empowering communities, suppressing transmission, saving lives, accelerating research and political and moral leadership. But it’s also a time for all countries to renew their commitment to universal health coverage as the cornerstone of social and economic development,” he said.

Published on June 30, 2020

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