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WHO Experts to Travel to China over Weekend to Study Coronavirus Origins

A station staff member wears protective gear as he checks the ID and health status of travellers before they enter the Beijing South Railway Station, after an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Beijing, China July 3, 2020. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

A station staff member wears protective gear as he checks the ID and health status of travellers before they enter the Beijing South Railway Station, after an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Beijing, China July 3, 2020. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Heavily criticised by the United States and others who have accused it of secrecy and a late response to the outbreak, which emerged in the central city of Wuhan late last year, China has said it was transparent throughout the early stages of the pandemic.

The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday that experts from the global body would travel to China at the weekend to prepare a study of the origins of the novel coronavirus and how it jumped from animals to humans.

"The best place to start is clearly where the disease emerged in humans first, and where the disease emerged in humans first, where the first clusters of atypical pneumonia occurred, was in Wuhan," Dr Mike Ryan head of the WHO's emergencies programme, told a news briefing in Geneva.

Heavily criticised by the United States and others who have accused it of secrecy and a late response to the outbreak, which emerged in the central city of Wuhan late last year, China has said it was transparent throughout the early stages of the pandemic.

first published:July 07, 2020, 22:24 IST