The Wuhan virus research lab and the speculation over its military use

By Jacques Massey

The former head of British foreign intelligence agency MI6, Sir Richard Dearlove, this week cited a scientific report suggesting the Covid-19 virus was man-made and that the pandemic was caused by its accidental leakage from a high-security laboratory in the Chinese city of Wuhan, a claim swiftly denied by the director of the site. The French-designed lab at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, inaugurated in 2017, was the result of a cooperation agreement signed between France and China for research into emerging diseases. In this second report into the history of the lab, Jacques Massey details how the agreement became a controversial issue within France’s government and intelligence agencies, notably because of the involvement of the Chinese military in scientific research, and the wider background of the accident-prone development of biological weapons.

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In an interview published on Wednesday, Sir Richard Dearlove, the former head of British foreign intelligence agency MI6, said he had seen an “important” recent scientific report which suggested the Covid-19 virus was produced by Chinese scientists, and that the pandemic that has spread across the globe was the result of an accidental leakage of the coronavirus strain from a research laboratory in the city of Wuhan, in China's Wubei province.