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Pompeo Steps Up Criticism of China But Eases Off Wuhan Lab Claim

  • He cites ‘different levels of certainty’ on pandemic’s start
  • Top U.S. diplomat says China won’t identify its ‘patient zero’
Bloomberg business news
Watch: Pompeo criticizes China’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak.(Source: APTN/Bloomberg)

Secretary of State Michael Pompeo again ratcheted up his criticism of China’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, asserting that it covered up the origins of the virus even as he eased off earlier claims of “enormous evidence” that the virus escaped from a laboratory there.

Pompeo started a briefing Wednesday by laying out a timeline of the Chinese government’s actions, saying that it had silenced doctors’ early warnings about the virus. He repeated the U.S. allegation that it’s still refusing to share virus samples or details about the start of the pandemic and on “patient zero,” the first victim. And he said other countries are starting to see it the U.S. way.