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Parliamentary questions
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7 April 2021
Question for written answer  E-001876/2021
to the Commission
Rule 138
Joanna Kopcińska (ECR)
 Subject: The WHO’s call for further research and data on the origins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus

In a report published on 30 March 2021, the WHO called for further in-depth research into the origins of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, stressing that all hypotheses remain open.

Its report deals extensively with the causes of the virus, explaining the hypotheses for possible transmission pathways and scenarios. It notes that the theory of introduction through an intermediate host followed by zoonotic transmission may be questionable (page 116 of the WHO report). Based on epidemiological analysis and genetic sequencing of viruses from new cases throughout 2020, there is no evidence of repeated introduction of early SARS-CoV-2 strains of potential animal origins into humans in China. The report makes clear that no genetic or serological evidence for SARS-CoV-2 in a wide range of domestic and wild animals has been found so far. The screening of the major livestock species was done across the country and provided no evidence for circulation of a related virus, which seems to call into question the common understanding of how the pandemic emerged.

Do the Commission and its executive agencies intend to refer to the various scenarios discussed in the report, in particular in the context of ‘introduction through an intermediate host’ followed by zoonotic transmission, an analysis of which is part of the broad focus of the OneHealth programme, not only in the context of AMR but also zoonotic disease control?

Original language of question: PL
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