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WHO adviser accuses COVID-19 lab-leak theory critics of 'thuggery'

WHO adviser accuses COVID-19 lab-leak theory critics of 'thuggery'
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A World Health Organization advisory board member accused scientists who wrote a letter criticizing the COVID-19 lab-leak theory in February 2020 of “thuggery” and “scientific propaganda.”

Jamie Metzl appeared on “Fox & Friends” on Wednesday to discuss the lab-leak theory that was largely ostracized last year as a coronavirus conspiracy theory but has now gained traction.

Metzl also called for the editor-in-chief of The Lancet, a medical journal, to step down after the publication published the letter from scientists in February 2020 that condemned the lab-leak theory. 

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“I feel that letter, it was not data-driven science. It was scientific propaganda and thuggery,” Metzl said during the interview.

Metzl has been a proponent of the theory that the coronavirus escaped from a Chinese lab since last year. He said earlier in the week on Fox News that a “massive cover-up” is being done by China on the origins of the pandemic.

“I’m not a right-wing nut. I’m actually a progressive Democrat. And so for me, the question isn’t is this a right-wing or left-wing thing. It’s just, let’s look at the data and just be honest,” Metzl said on "Fox & Friends."

The origins of the coronavirus are unclear. U.S. intelligence has reportedly determined that the virus could have emerged through transmission from an animal to a human naturally, but has also not ruled out the possibility the virus could have escaped from the lab, which studied various coronaviruses.

U.S. health officials such as Anthony FauciAnthony FauciDelta variant's UK dominance sparks concerns in US Overnight Health Care: FDA says millions of J&J doses from troubled plant must be thrown out | WHO warns Africa falling far behind in vaccinations | Top CDC official says US not ready for next pandemic Top CDC official warns US not ready for next pandemic MORE, the government's leading expert on infectious diseases, has also said it is possible the virus emerged from the lab, while saying it is likely that it moved from an animal to humanity.