UPDATED 3:05 PM PT – Monday, January 11, 2021
Experts from the World Health Organization are set to visit China to investigate the origins of COVID-19. On Monday, China announced that WHO experts will arrive on Thursday to conduct a field visit and probe origins of the virus.
"We are pleased that an international team of scientists – distinguished experts from ten institutions and countries – are commencing their travel to #China to engage in and review scientific research with their Chinese counterparts on the origins of the #COVID19 virus"-@DrTedros
— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) January 11, 2021
The visit comes amid international concerns over China’s lack of transparency over the initial COVID-19 outbreak in 2019.
Chinese experts will be present throughout the investigation alongside the WHO.
“After negotiation between the two parties, the Chinese government agreed that the World Health Organization’s international team of experts will come to China on January 14 to communicate with Chinese scientists and medical experts about scientific cooperation on the origins of the new coronavirus,” Zhao Lijian, spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said.
It is still unclear whether the WHO scientists will be able to visit Wuhan, where cases of coronavirus were first reported.