Chinese virologist claims Beijing DID cover up coronavirus and says she had to flee to US as a ‘whistleblower’


A CHINESE virologist has backed claims that Beijing tried to cover up the coronavirus and said she was forced to flee to the US.

Dr Li Meng-Yan, previously a specialist in virology at Hong Kong’s School of Public Health, said she had decided to leave the territory because she “knows how [China] treat whistleblowers”.

Dr Li Meng-Yan, a top Hong Kong virologist, has backed claims that China tried to cover up the coronavirus

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Dr Li Meng-Yan, a top Hong Kong virologist, has backed claims that China tried to cover up the coronavirusCredit: Fox News
She claims that the work of scientists studying the coronavirus in China was stifled

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She claims that the work of scientists studying the coronavirus in China was stifledCredit: AFP or licensors
Beijing has long faced accusations that it harassed and detained anyone who tried to raise the alarm about the virus

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Beijing has long faced accusations that it harassed and detained anyone who tried to raise the alarm about the virusCredit: AFP or licensors

Since the coronavirus outbreak first came to global attention earlier this year, the Chinese government has faced accusations that it sought to silence anyone who had earlier tried to raise the alarm.

Doctors have reported being detained after speaking out on social media about what they were witnessing, while journalists have recounted being harassed and having their equipment confiscated after trying to report on the issue.

Speaking to Fox News, Dr Li who travelled to the US in late April, said she was one of the first people to begin researching the new virus, but that her efforts were stifled.

“The reason I came to the U.S. is because I deliver the message of the truth of COVID,” she said.

“If I tell it in Hong Kong, the moment I start to tell it I will be disappeared and killed.”

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The claims come days after a new security law was passed in Hong Kong that critics say will allow Beijing to target its political opponents within the territory.

Dr Li said she her supervisor first asked her to conduct a “secret” investigation into a new “SARS-like” virus in Wuhan on December 31 of last year.

“The China government refused to get overseas experts, even including ones in Hong Kong, to do research in China,” she said.

“So I turned to my friends to get more information.”

She said she then spoke to a number of contacts, including one who worked at China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

She said the friend told her of an unknown virus that had emerged in Wuhan and that “family cluster cases”, an indicator of human-to-human transmission, had been observed.

She was also told that the number of cases was thought to be rising exponentially.

She claims that, when she took her findings to her superior, she was told to “keep silent and be careful”.

“He warned me…, ‘Don’t touch the red line’,” Dr Li said, referring to the unspoken limits placed by Beijing on such investigations.

“‘We will get in trouble and we’ll be disappeared’.” 

The last week has seen Beijing impose draconian new laws in Hong Kong, previously guaranteed autonomy under an arrangement known as “one country, two systems”.

The law is vaguely worded, but targets offences such as secession, subversion, terrorism, and collusion with foreign forces.

Critics say the law will erode the freedom of the press, the independence of the judiciary, and the right to peaceful protest within the territory.

The claims come after Beijing imposed draconian new laws within Hong Kong

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The claims come after Beijing imposed draconian new laws within Hong KongCredit: Getty – Contributor





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