Shocking new dossier claims china cover-up led to coronavirus pandemic

The 15-page dossier, apparently compiled by the Australian Secret Intelligence Service for "Five Eyes" partners the US, UK, New Zealand and Canada, may bolster calls for billions of pounds worth of reparations against Beijing.

The report condemns China's secrecy over the initial outbreak which, it says, amounted to an "assault on international transparency" enabling a containable problem to become a global pandemic.

The dossier, which was leaked to Australian newspaper The Saturday Telegraph, describes how "to the endangerment of other countries" China covered up news of the virus by "disappearing" doctors who spoke out.

It also accuses them of destroying laboratory evidence and refusing to provide live samples to international scientists working on a vaccine.

Its emergence follows a ramping up of tension between Australia and Beijing following a call by Aussie PM Scott Morrison for a global inquiry into the origins of Covid-19 and why it spread to become a pandemic.

The report cites a "deadly denial of human-to-human transmission" and a delay in acknowledging the risk to the World Health Organization, leading to the exodus of five million people from Wuhan in early January. Australian intelligence officials say the P4 laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology had been investigating deadly bat-derived coronaviruses.

The report cites a "deadly denial of human-to-human transmission" and a delay in acknowledging the risk to the World Health Organization, leading to the exodus of five million people from Wuhan in early January. Australian intelligence officials say the P4 laboratory at the Wuhan Institute of Virology had been investigating deadly bat-derived coronaviruses.

Several studies conducted by Dr Shi Zhengli are cited as areas of concern by the report.

At least one of the estimated 50 virus samples Dr Shi analysed in her laboratory is a 96 percent genetic match to Covid-19. When she learned of the outbreak of a new pneumonia-like virus, she spoke publicly about the sleepless nights she suffered worrying if her laboratory was responsible.

However, she has since claimed that further studies have shown no link between her work and Covid-19's genetic sequencing.

Officially the Australian government and Nato say the virus probably originated in the Wuhan wet market, with Australia adding a five percent chance it accidentally leaked from a laboratory.

Last night experts said while any report by an intelligence service was "significant", the dossier had no new evidence to further the case against China.

Matthew Henderson, who served with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in Beijing and is now head of the Henry Jackson Society'sAsia programme, said: "Chinese cover-up and misinformation were clearly responsible for the spread of the pandemic."

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick refused to be drawn at yesterday's press briefing whether Britain would look to claim reparation money from China over the virus.

He said: "At the moment, as you would expect, we are 100 percent focused on trying to tackle coronavirus. There will come a time when we will want to analyse the origins of the virus in detail, but that's not now."

Last week President Trump hinted he may seek damages.

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