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National security adviser: China has not made ‘sufficient original data’ available on virus spread

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White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Sunday that Chinese officials have not made “sufficient original data” available on the domestic and international spread of the coronavirus.

“We do not believe China has made available sufficient original data into how this pandemic began to spread both in China and then eventually around the world,” Sullivan said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” Sunday, noting that the U.S. still has questions in response to a forthcoming WHO report on the virus’ origins.

“We believe both the WHO and China should step up on this matter,” Sullivan added, saying that he also believed “we need to take a variety of steps to look at the previous administration’s response to the pandemic and what lessons we need to learn to make sure that never happens again.”

Sullivan went on to say the Trump administration “did not take pandemic surveillance as seriously as they should.”

CBS’ Margaret Brennan asked Sullivan whether he believed the WHO had been “manipulated by China” in probing the virus’ origins.

“I’m not going to characterize it that way. What I am going to say is the only way to have a scientifically based investigation is to have access to all of the data and to not merely know what happened in this pandemic but to be able to prevent future pandemics as well,’ Sullivan responded.

Sullivan added that “the lessons we learn this time around will apply in the future.”

“I’m not in a position to say how COVID-19 came into this world,” he told Brennan. “All I’m in a position to do is to call upon the who to do its job to the fullest extent possible.” 

Tags Coronavirus Jake Sullivan

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