Now Fauci wants answers from China: Embattled doctor urges Beijing to RELEASE medical records of six miners and three Wuhan lab workers who got sick with COVID symptoms when they visited the bat cave before the pandemic

  • Six miners fell ill in 2012 after visiting the bat cave in the Yunnan cave in 2012
  • Three researchers from the Wuhan Institute of Virology also got sick in 2019
  • All of them suffered symptoms similar to COVID before the outbreak unfolded 
  • Fauci believes the records could provide insights into the origins of the virus 
  • ‘It is entirely conceivable that the origins of Sars-Cov-2 was in that cave and either started spreading naturally or went through the lab,’ he said 
  • Follows the release of thousands of his emails at the start of the pandemic 

Embattled White House chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci has urged China to release the medical records of nine people who fell sick with a coronavirus-like illness prior to the outbreak, saying they could provide insights into whether the pandemic came from a lab.

The ‘lab leak’ theory has gained increasing traction, fueled by reports that six miners fell ill in 2012 and three researchers from the Wuhan Institute of Virology became sick in 2019 after visiting a bat cave in the southwestern Chinese province of Yunnan.

In an interview with The Financial Times on Thursday, President Joe Biden’s chief medical advisor said the records could answer critical questions over the contested origins of Covid-19 in Wuhan, where a pandemic that has killed over 3.6 million people worldwide began.

His latest statements come as he still deals with the fallout of the release of his emails that show he communicated with Dr. Peter Daszak, the head of a non-profit who redistributed a US grant given to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Daszak thanked Fauci for downplaying the ‘lab leak theories when he said COVID likely came from a natural spillover rather than the lab.

 ‘I just wanted to say a personal thank you on behalf of our staff and collaborators, for publicly standing up and stating that the scientific evidence supports a natural origin for COVID-19 from a bat-to-human spillover, not a lab release from the Wuhan Institute of Virology,’ Daszak wrote to Fauci. 

Now Fauci is calling for more answers, a week after President Biden ordered US intelligence to conduct a deeper investigation into the COVID origins and report back on two likely scenarios – whether it came from bats or a lab leak. 

Fauci has insisted the emails were taken out of context, has defended the Chinese scientists.

He also said he was never anti-Trump, but admitted who could never fully guarantee what was going on in the Wuhan lab after the National Institutes of Helath (NIH) gave them a US taxpayer-funded grant.

Dr Fauci has urged the Chinese government to release the medical records of six miners who fell ill in 2012 and three researchers from the Wuhan Institute of Virology became sick in 2019 after visiting a bat cave in the southwestern Chinese province of Yunnan. An image of researchers at a similar mine in Guangdong is pictured above

Shi Zhengli, the so-called ‘bat woman’ and a coronavirus expert at the lab, insists there were no infections at the lab.

Fauci has not contested her claims, but has now called for further investigation. 

‘I would like to see the medical records of the three people who are reported to have got sick in 2019,’ Fauci said. ‘Did they really get sick, and if so, what did they get sick with?

‘The same with the miners who got ill years ago… What do the medical records of those people say?’ he asked.

‘It is entirely conceivable that the origins of Sars-Cov-2 was in that cave and either started spreading naturally or went through the lab.’

Fauci has previously said he believes Covid-19 was a natural occurrence, though he has admitted to not being ‘100 percent’ certain.

China wholly rejects the lab leak theory, and has instead accused the US of peddling conspiracies and politicising the pandemic to divert attention from the high death rates there. Evidence to support the hypothesis is also scant.

The natural origin theory — backed as the most likely by a WHO expert team who visited China last year — holds that the virus emerged in bats then passed to humans, likely via an intermediary species.

‘I would like to see the medical records of the three people who are reported to have got sick in 2019,’ Fauci said. ‘Did they really get sick, and if so, what did they get sick with?

Beijing’s foreign ministry Friday cited the findings of that visit in dismissing Fauci’s comments — and cited unsubstantiated claims that the virus first appeared at a US biological research center at Fort Detrick.

It pointed to a Wuhan Institute of Virology statement from March when asked if Beijing would share the medical records.

‘We hope that people who do not hold conspiracy theories, who do respect the facts and who do respect the truth can get factual answers from this statement,’ Wang Wenbin, a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, told a briefing.

A widely accepted theory at the start of the pandemic, scientists have yet to find a virus in either bats or another animal that matches the genetic signature of SARS-CoV-2.

Biden last week ordered US intelligence agencies to report to him in the next three months on whether the Covid-19 virus first emerged in China from an animal source or from a laboratory accident.

While China has tried to insist the virus originated elsewhere, academics, politicians and the media have begun to contemplate the possibility it escaped from the WIV – raising suspicions that Chinese officials simply hid evidence of the early spread

The Wuhan Institute of Virology is at the center of theories that Covid-19 leaked from a lab

Daily Mail has been asking if the virus stemmed from a Wuhan lab since April 2020

The Daily Mail has consistently questioned the consensus that COVID-19 was transmitted from humans to animals.

Our reporters have dug into the details and challenged the assumptions about how the pandemic originated. 

APRIL 4, 2020: 

Did coronavirus leak from a research lab in Wuhan? Startling new theory is ‘no longer being discounted’ amid claims staff ‘got infected after being sprayed with blood’

Ministers fear that the coronavirus pandemic might have been caused by a leak from a Chinese laboratory, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

Senior Government sources say that while ‘the balance of scientific advice’ is still that the deadly virus was first transmitted to humans from a live animal market in Wuhan, a leak from a laboratory in the Chinese city is ‘no longer being discounted’.

One member of Cobra, the emergency committee led by Boris Johnson, said last night that while the latest intelligence did not dispute the virus was ‘zoonotic’ – originating in animals – it did not rule out that the virus first spread to humans after leaking from a Wuhan laboratory. 

APRIL 15, 2020:

Mike Pompeo demands truth from Beijing as US investigates if COVID-19 escaped from Wuhan lab during experiments and China covered it up by blaming ‘wet’ food markets

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has demanded that China ‘come clean’ following reports that coronavirus originated in a Chinese laboratory, not as a bioweapon, but as part of bungling experiments to prove that Chinese scientists were superior to Americans in identifying emerging virus threats.

It comes after President Donald Trump said on Wednesday the U.S. is trying to determine whether the coronavirus first crossed to humans accidentally during experiments with bats at the Wuhan Institute of Virology Lab.

After word of the outbreak finally became public, Chinese leaders were quick to blame Wuhan’s ‘wet market’ where wild animals — though not bats — are sold for consumption, leading one source to tell Fox News the debacle is the ‘costliest government coverup of all time.’

MAY 2, 2020: 

Wuhan virus lab ‘cover-up’: Startling photos of scientists wearing little protection as they handle deadly bat samples vanish from website of Chinese institute at the centre of global suspicion over pandemic 

Pictures which appear to show slack safety standards at the Chinese laboratory at the centre of international sus­picion over Covid-19 have been systematically deleted from its website – as Donald Trump continues to ramp up the pressure on Beijing over its potential role in the outbreak. 

During the past month, Wuhan’s Institute of Virology has removed photographs of scientists working in its laboratories and edited out references to visits by US diplomats who subsequently raised the alarm about the laboratory’s work on bats. 

US President Donald Trump announced on Thursday that he had seen intelligence that gave him a ‘high degree of confidence’ that the global crisis had its origins in the institute – a month after The Mail on Sunday first revealed that British Cabinet Ministers had received classified briefings raising the possibility of a leak from the institute. 

Downing Street did not take issue with President Trump’s remarks. ‘There are clearly questions that need to be answered about the origin and spread of the virus,’ a spokesman for Boris Johnson said. 

MAY 30, 2020:

Beijing now admits that coronavirus DIDN’T start in Wuhan’s market… so where DID it come from 

China has become used to public confessions on television. But this time the words came from one of the nation’s top officials and had seismic global implications.

‘At first, we assumed the seafood market might have the virus, but now the market is more like a victim,’ said Gao Fu, director of the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.

Gao’s initial analysis had made sense after previous outbreaks of zoonotic viruses (diseases that jump from animals to humans). Yet suspicion grew over the Chinese government’s failure to share data from animals sampled in the market following its early cover-ups.

JANUARY 2, 2021: 

China lab leak is the ‘most credible’ source of the coronavirus outbreak, says top US government official, amid bombshell claims Wuhan scientist has turned whistleblower 

One of America’s most senior government officials says the most ‘credible’ theory about the origin of coronavirus is that it escaped from a laboratory in China.

Matthew Pottinger, who is President Donald Trump’s respected Deputy National Security Adviser, told politicians from around the world that even China’s leaders now openly admit their previous claims that the virus originated in a Wuhan market are false.

Mr Pottinger said that the latest intelligence points to the virus leaking from the top-secret Wuhan Institute of Virology, 11 miles from the market, saying: ‘There is a growing body of evidence that the lab is likely the most credible source of the virus.’

JANUARY 9, 2021:

New cover-up fears as Chinese officials delete critical data about the Wuhan lab with details of 300 studies vanishing – including all those carried out by virologist dubbed Batwoman

The Chinese government is facing fresh accusations of a cover-up after officials deleted crucial online data about the laboratory suspected of being the source of Covid-19.

The Mail on Sunday can reveal that hundreds of pages of information relating to studies carried out by the top-secret Wuhan Institute of Virology have been wiped.

Details of more than 300 studies, including many investigating diseases that pass from animals to humans, published online by the state-run National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) are no longer available.

APRIL 24, 2021:

Worrying new clues about the origins of Covid: How scientists at Wuhan lab helped Chinese army in secret project to find animal viruses 

Scientists studying bat diseases at China’s maximum-security laboratory in Wuhan were engaged in a massive project to investigate animal viruses alongside leading military officials – despite their denials of any such links.

Documents obtained by The Mail on Sunday reveal that a nationwide scheme, directed by a leading state body, was launched nine years ago to discover new viruses and detect the ‘dark matter’ of biology involved in spreading diseases.

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