Today’s update starts with a further confirmation that US officials believe the coronavirus came from the Wuhan laboratory facility.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said “enormous evidence” exists indicating the coronavirus pandemic began in a lab in Wuhan, China and that the ruling Communist Party did everything it could to keep the outbreak under wraps.

“There’s enormous evidence that that’s where this began. We’ve said from the beginning that this was a virus that originated in Wuhan, China. We took a lot of grief for that from the outset. But I think the whole world can see now,” he said on ABC News’ “This Week” on Sunday.

“Remember, China has a history of infecting the world, and they have a history of running substandard laboratories. These are not the first times that we’ve had a world exposed to viruses as a result of failures in a Chinese lab.”

Pompeo also asserted that China hid the extent of the coronavirus spread, including concealing the severity.

“You’ve got the facts just about right,” Pompeo told ABC’s “This Week” when asked if China intentionally stockpiled medical supplies in early January while it concealed the severity of Covid-19. “We can confirm that the Chinese Communist Party did all that it could to make sure that the world didn’t learn in a timely fashion about what was taking place.”

Pompeo’s comments come as the Trump administration is formulating a long-term plan to punish China on multiple fronts for the coronavirus pandemic, injecting a rancorous new element into a critical relationship already on a steep downward slide.

Multiple sources inside the administration say that there is an appetite to use various tools, including sanctions, canceling US debt obligations and drawing up new trade policies, to make clear to China, and to everyone else, where they feel the responsibility lies.

…Pompeo added that China “behaved like authoritarian regimes do, attempted to conceal and hide and confused and employed the World Health Organization as a tool to do the same.”

“These are the kinds of things that have presented this enormous crisis and enormous loss of life and tremendous economic loss all across the globe,” he said. “The Australians agree with that, you hear the Europeans beginning to say the same thing, and I think the whole world is united understanding that China brought this virus to the world.”

Pompeo was questioned about the virus as well:

“Do you think they intentionally released that virus, or it was an accident in the lab?” Co-Anchor Martha Raddatz pressed.

“I can’t answer your question about that,” he said, “because the Chinese Communist Party has refused to cooperate with world health experts.”

… Pompeo on Sunday agreed the virus was not manmade.

A recent press release from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) that said, “The Intelligence Community also concurs with the wide scientific consensus that the COVID-19 virus was not manmade or genetically modified.”

Pompeo said that he has “no reason to disbelieve” the intelligence community, adding, “I’ve seen their analysis. I’ve seen the summary that you saw that was released publicly. I have no reason to doubt that that is accurate.”

The full interview is here:

 

 
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