Scottish Daily Mail

Tory call to open Covid files as US leads way on Wuhan lab leak theory

- By Martin Beckford Policy Editor

SIR Iain Duncan Smith last night urged ministers to release MI6 briefings about Covid-19’s origins.

The Tory former leader’s interventi­on came after the US House of Representa­tives unanimousl­y voted to declassify intelligen­ce about China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Sir Iain told the Mail that the Government ‘must declassify our intelligen­ce’ to justify its initial dismissal of the lab leak theory.

Referencin­g leaked WhatsApp messages revealed in the Press this week, he said: ‘The British Government has never told us the truth about their views on this and we have only discovered it from Matt Hancock. If they dismiss the lab leak theory then let’s see their intelligen­ce as to why they do so.’

A criticised World Health Organisati­on investigat­ion carried out with China in 2021 said the lab leak theory was ‘extremely unlikely’.

In the US, intelligen­ce relating to the Wuhan Institute of Virology and informatio­n on ‘potential links’ between research done there and the outbreak of Covid-19 is set to be declassifi­ed. US intelligen­ce agencies are divided over whether a lab leak or a spillover from animals is the probable source of the virus.

Representa­tive Michael Turner, chairman of the House Intelligen­ce Committee, said the American public deserves to know ‘how this virus was created and, specifical­ly, whether it was a natural occurrence or was the result of a labrelated event’.

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