Pioneer1 Posted February 26 Report Share Posted February 26 Agency Sides With Theory That Lab Leak Sparked Pandemic Energy Department agrees with FBI's conclusion, for a different reason The COVID-19 pandemic probably began with a laboratory leak, the Energy Department has decided. The agency, which had not expressed a view on the origin of the coronavirus, added its finding to a previous classified intelligence report sent to the White House and certain members of Congress, the Wall Street Journal reports. The conclusion, which is based on new intelligence, is far from being the last word: US agencies are divided on the issue, and the Energy Department said in the document that its assessment was reached with "low confidence." The report says the virus was circulating in Wuhan, China, by November 2019. The FBI also says a lab leak is to blame, rating the strength of its conviction at "moderate confidence." But US officials told the Journal that the Energy Department and FBI reached the same conclusion for different reasons. Four other agencies, plus the National Intelligence Council, attribute the origins of the outbreak, with "low confidence," to natural transmission from an infected animal. The CIA hasn't decided between the two leading theories. A Stanford University microbiologist praised the willingness to reconsider the issue. "My plea is that we not accept an incomplete answer or give up because of political expediency," David Relman said. Jake Sullivan, White House national security adviser, said Sunday on CNN's State of the Union that there are a "variety of views" on the origin among intelligence agencies, adding that President Biden has told intelligence officials to get "to the bottom of this question," per the Hill. As is, Sullivan said, there's "no definitive answer." The Energy Department would not comment on its finding. (Studies last year traced the virus to a Wuhan market.) Agency Sides With Theory That Lab Leak Sparked Pandemic (newser.com) Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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