The NIH Director wants to answer congressional questions about his agency’s connections to a Wuhan lab, but only in private, he said to the Hugh Hewitt Show this week.
Referring to a congressional letter concerning his agency’s partnership with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, Dr. Francis Collins stated, “in response, we offered to get into a secure place and have a discussion … Much of the information they are requesting, we do not have answers to. Some of it is actually sensitive, not classified, but close.”
“Not good. The public must have answers,” Washington Post reporter Josh Rogin replied on twitter.
We don't need Fauci and Collins telling lies, again, in
a "secure space.".
We need Fauci and Collins taking the Fifth, again and again, in televised public hearings, testifying under oath, subject to penalties for perjury.
— Richard H. Ebright (@R_H_Ebright) June 2, 2021
The Wuhan Virology Lab is coming under investigation that COVID-19 leaked from the lab.
The NIH’s funds that went to a Chinese lab did not break regulations because it was concerning research on a bat virus and not a human one, and was meant to study how the virus moved to humans, Collins said in other comments this week.
“The terms of the funding were only for bat viruses, and did not give freedom for gain-of-function research for the studying human viruses,” he said.
Under regulations started in 2017, funding for research on pandemic potential viruses must be investigated by a board that studies its risks. But such a board does not have to review a grant if the agency giving the funds determines that the virus is unlikely to be transmissible to humans.
Nor does such a board look at grant proposals studying “natural pathogens that circulate or have been got from nature,” the regulations state.
The research regulations are largely ignored, it was reported Thursday.
“If you stop gain-of-function studies, you stop all virology,” an anonymous official inside the agency said. “After the moratorium, everyone has just gone wink-wink and continued on with gain-of-function research.”
Author: Steven Sinclaire