Of the 27 scientists who signed a high-profile letter discrediting the theory that the COVID-19 or CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus emerged from a laboratory—26 had links to Chinese colleagues.

The famous letter, published in The Lancet, was decisive in closing “the scientific debate on whether the coronavirus was manipulated or leaked from the laboratory,” revealed in an investigation by The Telegraph on Sept. 11. 

Except for one of them, those who signed the statement had established various links with Chinese researchers, their colleagues, or their benefactors—possibly dependent on the CCP. 

The Lancet letter was published in March 2020 and described as “conspiracy theories,” the claims that COVID-19 originated in a laboratory. Several indications pointed especially to the one at the Wuhan Institute of Virology in Wuhan, China.

Among the signatories was Dr. Peter Daszak, chairman of the EcoHealth Alliance in Great Britain, which funded the controversial Wuhan Institute of Virology research. Also, the British government’s scientific advisor, Sir Jeremy Farrar, according to the Daily Mail.

Further inquiries made through FOIA requests showed that Daszak reportedly disclosed on Feb. 8 that he composed the letter after Chinese researchers asked him for a show of support.

In this case, Daszak’s actions were found to constitute a conflict of interest in endorsing the letter, given the relationship of the NGO he chaired with the Wuhan laboratory.

As a result of this finding, Daszak was removed from the UN-backed Lancet commission studying the pandemic’s origins.

However, although five other signatories also worked for EcoHealth Alliance, none declared their involvement. 

Others of the participants concealed their relationships with individuals or entities suspected of involvement in the possible origins of COVID. 

EcoHealth Alliance is a U.S.-based NGO with a mission to “protect wildlife and public health from disease emergence.”

On the other hand, it was not until May that the possibility of COVID having emerged from a laboratory linked to the CCP was revisited, according to an article published in the journal Science, reports the Daily Mail. 

In that issue, 18 scientists declared: “we must take seriously the hypotheses about natural and laboratory overflows until we have sufficient data.”

 Since then, many elements of judgment have pointed in that direction: However, multiple attempts to further verify the facts at the Wuhan Institute of Virology have met with strong resistance from the CCP. 

Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said on May 27 that he planned to propose sanctions against China for not allowing an independent investigation into the possible leak of the CCP virus at the Wuhan lab, the New York Post reported.

“I don’t think without sanctions, without international pressure, they’re ever going to help. The only way China’s going to respond is when the world makes them respond,” Graham said.

“So sanctions led by the United States, embraced by the world, I think would get us to where we need to go, and I intend to introduce those sanctions relatively soon,” the senator assured.