Extracts from Foreign Ministry Spokesperson’s Regular Press Conference
Xinhua News Agency: It is reported that some “international scientists” co-signed an open letter, clamoring for a comprehensive inquiry into the origin of the novel coronavirus and even calling for an “alternative investigation” jointly carried out by Western countries with the OECD, G7 and the Quad, etc. Do you have any comment?
Wang Wenbin: I noted the report you mentioned. It is not the first time for the so-called “international scientists” to resort to grandstanding.
Who are these so-called scientists? One of the initiators of the open letter is a senior researcher of the US think tank Atlantic Council. But this can conceal neither his background as a former member of the White House National Security Council nor the politician in his bones. Another is a bank data engineer, an imposter in the field of origin studies, who, emboldened by ignorance, makes unverified and irresponsible remarks.
For those “scientists” who aim to craft a publicity stunt and attract attention, my advice is, to concentrate on scientific studies of their research fields, and do something that truly benefits humanity. At the same time, we’ve seen many true scientists who uphold the truth-seeking spirit of science and an objective and just position being attacked and defamed by certain governments and radical forces, and even received death threats. It is thought-provoking to see such distortion of right and wrong.
We believe that among those who signed the letter are some unwitting scientists who have been kept in the dark and taken advantage of. I would like to tell them that the WHO joint mission report already reached a scientific and authoritative conclusion for the first phase of study. Don’t be blinded by doctored “truth”, misled by politicized “science” or deceived by rumors and lies. Come back to science and reason.
The open letter states that the investigation team should have the right to conduct a complete investigation. Origin study is and can only be a joint scientific study and should never become an investigation on China only. With regard to the requirement to share raw data, China actually presented item by item raw data to WHO experts during the joint China-WHO study. Chinese and foreign experts made full use of the data to jointly identify the approach and plan for the analysis, and analyze and interpret the research outcomes. The findings of the study involve in-depth participation of foreign experts and have their full endorsement.
The open letter also proposes an “alternative investigation” carried out by Western countries with G7 and the Quad that groups US, Japan, India and Australia. This reveals the true intention of certain countries to blatantly seek presumption of guilt and political manipulation in the name of “international scientists”. I want to stress once again that origin study is a scientific issue. The right approach is to rely on scientists, follow the science and adopt scientific methods. The right direction is to follow the requirements in the WHA resolution and conclusions and suggestions in the joint mission report, and conduct more in-depth and thorough study and cooperation in a broader scope. Any action that politicizes origin-tracing poisons the atmosphere of scientific research, hampers global cooperation in this regard, and undermines global efforts to fight the virus. We advise certain countries and relevant forces to stop the clumsy performance, and truly contribute to human life and health.