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October 26, 2021 COVID Views


New WHO Group to Look Into Pandemic Origins Dogged by Alleged Conflicts of Interest

“If there were a Nobel prize for scientific and political incompetence, surely [the World Health Organization] would be in the running for it,” said Gary Ruskin of U.S. Right to Know, a nonprofit that investigates academics for conflicts of interest and undisclosed ties to the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

A task force into COVID’s origins shut down earlier this month over conflicts of interest and ties with Peter Daszak’s EcoHealth Alliance.

Editor’s note: Here’s an excerpt from an article in The BMJ. To read the piece in its entirety, click here.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has chosen 26 scientists from 700 applicants for a new group to investigate the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as future outbreaks.

WHO plans to appoint members to the new Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens (SAGO) after a two week review to gather public opinion on the proposed choices, which ends on Oct. 27.

Seven of the current choices (see below) were part of the WHO international team that traveled to China earlier this year to study the origins of SARS-CoV-2 with Chinese researchers.

The team’s resulting report downplayed the possibility of a laboratory incident, and investigators faced complaints about conflicts of interest. Led by the U.S., several countries, including Australia, Japan, Canada and the UK, called for a “transparent and independent analysis and evaluation, free from interference and undue influence.”

Read the entire The BMJ article here.

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