From the very moment that European medical experts got a good look at COVID-19, they knew that something was amiss.
The virus that China had been warning the world about was not what the rest of the globe was dealing with. Instead, the novel strain of coronavirus that sparked a global pandemic was far, far worse than the data from the Far East suggested, leaving many to wonder if Beijing had purposefully downplayed the virus in order to catch the rest of the world off guard.
Now, we may be close to finding the answer to that query.
On January 12, Professor Kwok Yung Yuen diagnosed a family with the coronavirus in Shenzhen, 700 miles from Wuhan. Only some of the family members had been to the city where the COVID-19 outbreak originated, so Yuen knew immediately that he was seeing evidence of human-to-human transmission of the new coronavirus.
He immediately alerted the authorities in Beijing.
But it took eight days for Beijing to warn the world that the coronavirus, which has now killed almost 650,000 people and infected over 16 million, could be spread through human-to-human transmission.
Yuen, who spoke to the BBC show Panorama for an episode due to be broadcast later on Monday, was helping to investigate the outbreak in Wuhan in early January after other whistleblower doctors had attempted to raise the alarm in late December.
Yuen told the BBC he believes local officials covered up the scale of the initial outbreak by destroying physical evidence and delaying the response to clinical findings.
And that’s not all…
“When we went to the Huanan supermarket, of course, there was nothing to see because the market was clean already,” Yuen said. “So, you may say that the crime scene is already disturbed because the supermarket was cleared, we cannot identify any host which is giving the virus to humans.”
Yuen would go on to say that the coverup began at the local level, and continued to grow from there.
Several US lawmakers have been adamant that China should be asked to pay reparations to the rest of the world on account of the way they tried to hide the severity of COVID-19.