The World Health Organization said on Thursday that its newest examination into the origins of COVID-19 was inconclusive, owing partly to a lack of evidence from China, adding to its years-long struggle to understand how the epidemic originated.
According to the WHO expert panel’s study, all available evidence indicated that the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19 originates from animals, most likely bats, a similar finding to the UN agency’s earlier work on the matter in 2021, which followed a trip to China.
Due to a lack of data from China, where the first instances were reported in December 2019, it was unable to determine how the virus was originally transmitted to people.
The results are likely to raise concerns about determining how and where the virus developed.
They will also add urgency to the drive to restructure the WHO and its health emergency protocols, as the organization seeks to reestablish itself following years of criticism for its handling of the epidemic.
According to the WHO, the report, the first of many coming from the group, is also about devising a better mechanism to investigate the causes of future epidemics.
According to the paper, WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus wrote to the Chinese government twice in February this year in search of further information, while the authors also said that China had supplied some data on request.