FBI Director Christopher Wray:  Covid-19 "most likely" came from a leak from a government research lab in China
FBI Director Christopher Wray:  Covid-19

Washington: Calling for a bureau evaluation, FBI Director Christopher Wray insisted that Covid-19 "most likely" resulted from a leak from a Chinese government laboratory.

The claim comes in the wake of information from a classified briefing by the Department of Energy, which also suggested the pathogen may have come from a laboratory.

In an interview with Fox News that aired Tuesday, Ray was asked about the origins of the global health crisis. He replied that his organization is certain that the virus emerged from a laboratory in Wuhan, China, in late 2019.

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"The FBI has determined for some time that a possible laboratory incident in Wuhan is most likely the source of the pandemic. Here, you are speculating about a possible leak from a facility under the control of the Chinese government," he said. "That's exactly the capacity it was designed for," Ray continued, as the virus has killed "millions of Americans."

The bureau turned Ray's comments into a series of tweets, apparently in an effort to promote the director's claims online. He told Fox's Bret Baier that much of the information relating to the FBI investigation is "classified" rather than presenting any evidence to support his claims.

In reference to investigations by US federal agencies and "foreign partners", Wray said they are "doing their best to sabotage and disrupt work here", without elaborating on the alleged obstructive measures.

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The director's remarks followed a Wall Street Journal article over the weekend that cited a classified intelligence briefing that the White House and top lawmakers had recently seen.

The memo noted that the Department of Energy had revised its position on the origin of the virus and now thinks that COVID-19 most likely emerged from a Wuhan lab.

The report also said that four other federal agencies continue to be confident the pathogen spread to humans through natural transmission rather than accidental exposure in a laboratory setting, and that the department reached that conclusion with only "low confidence."

In a previous assessment published in 2021, the Director of National Intelligence said the Department of Energy was unsure at the time, but that the FBI had "moderate confidence" in the lab leak theory.

The change in status was brought about by "new intelligence," according to officials contacted by the Journal, though they declined to provide further details.

In 2021, a team from the World Health Organization (WHO) went to China to trace the origin of the virus and came to the conclusion that the lab leak theory was "highly unlikely".

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Beijing, on the other hand, has dismissed the leak claim as, at best, a baseless rumor and at worst, a coordinated effort to damage China's reputation abroad. Beijing claims it has been "open and transparent" and asked researchers to look into the cause of the epidemic.

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