Dr. Fauci's leaked 2020 emails reveal knowledge of lab-leak theory

Members of a World Health Organization team visit the Hubei Animal Epidemic Disease Prevention and Control Center in Wuhan in February. | REUTERS

Paul, as well as former President Donald Trump, have leaned into the theory that the COVID-19 pandemic started as a Wuhan-based lab leak - and not a naturally occurring animal-to-human transmission that either started or grew from a Wuhan wet market.

Shortly after the release of the book was announced, many criticised Fauci, the director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and the chief medical advisor to the president, for what they saw as an attempt to profit from the coronavirus pandemic, given that he particularly gained attention and notoriety as the country's leading infectious disease expert and, at times, the head of a White House coronavirus task force. Scientists from the Wuhan Institute of Virology subsequently visited the cave to take samples from the bats.

In a February 2020 email exchange with a former USA health secretary, Dr Fauci said: "Masks are really for infected people to prevent them from spreading infection to people who are not infected rather than protecting uninfected people from acquiring infection".

For February 2020 email exchange wit one former U.S. health secretary, Dr Fauci said: "Masks really na for infected pipo to prevent them from spreading infection to pipo wey no dey infected rather than protecting uninfected pipo from getting di infection".

"The same with the miners who got ill years ago".

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China's Foreign Ministry spokesman W Wen bin refused to comment directly on whether China would publish records of nine people, but strongly denied that the institute was associated with the outbreak of COVID-19. Was there [a] virus in those people? None of the branches have a high level of confidence in their conclusion. Anthony Fauci in a radio interview Wednesday, claiming he's invested in a Wuhan lab leak theory being discredited because the USA financed some of the lab's research.

The Kentucky Republican also said Daszak can not be part of any investigation into COVID-19 origins.

The leaked emails paint a damning picture of Dr. Fauci's credibility because he had been categorically dismissing theories about the virus being man-made, until Senator Paul shifted the Overton window by presenting compelling evidence.

Asher added that while he respected Fauci, he was frustrated at what he perceived as a lack of interest at NIAID and its parent agency, the National Institutes of Health, into pursuing the possibility that the virus had leaked from the lab.

Even as the United States is putting up pressure on China over the investigation of alleged COVID-19 origin in Wuhan lab, the latter hit back saying that it is the USA where the origin should be studied. But he said he thought the question warranted further investigation, not least because of the renewed public interest. Fauci is at the head of this and really if we want to investigate this lab and we want to know how to prevent this from happening again, Fauci can not be a part of this investigation'. 'Let me say clearly that as far as World Health Organization is concerned all hypotheses remain on the table'.

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