FIRST ON FOX: Republican House Intelligence Committee members say in a just-released report there are “indications” that COVID-19 may be linked to China’s bioweapons research program and “spilled” on the general human population during an incident at the Institute of Wuhan of Virology.
The information was released Wednesday night in a minority personnel report by members of the House Intelligence Standing Select Committee.
“Contrary to the implication of the [Intelligence Community’s] declassified report, based on our investigation involving a variety of public and non-public information, we conclude that there are indications that SARS-CoV-2 may have been linked to China’s biological weapons research program and spread to the human population during a laboratory “Wuhan Institute of Virology related incident,” a summary of the report said. “The IC failed to adequately address this information in its classified updated assessment. When we attempted to raise the concerns with the IC, it failed to respond.”
In a declassified assessment of the origins of COVID-19 by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence in October 2021, the report said that SARS-CoV-2 “was probably not a biological weapon,” adding, “We remain skeptical on allegations that SARS-CoV-2 was a biological weapon because they are supported by scientifically invalid claims.”
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Wednesday’s report released by House Republicans also said its investigation “revealed serious shortcomings with both classified and declassified versions of the intelligence community” and said the omissions “likely skewed the public’s understanding of key issues.” and they deepened the distrust”.
“The Committee believes that the IC has downplayed important information related to possible links between COVID-19 and China’s biological weapons research based in part on input from outside experts,” the report said, adding that the intelligence community “rejects to be transparent with the Committee on which experts it relied”.
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While stating that the origins of COVID were likely related to China’s bioweapons research program, the report said, “We have seen no credible indication that the virus was released intentionally, rather than accidentally.”
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“Nor do we pretend that the information we have found is a smoking gun that definitively settles the question of the origins of COVID-19 beyond any doubt. However, the information is important to promote public understanding and we will seek to declassify the classified version of our report at the next Congress to foster conversation,” the report said.