GOP lawmakers launch probe into US funding of Wuhan lab
Ranking members of the House Oversight and Reform Committee and the House Judiciary Committee announced Friday that they will be investigating how the Wuhan Virology Institute spent taxpayer funds. The National Institute of Health awarded grants and funds in 2019.
Reps. James Comer (R-KY) and Jim Jordan (R-OH) wrote a letter to announce the probe. Their investigative scope includes the NIH, and the EcoHealth Alliance, which received the funding and subsequently awarded it to the WVI. Meanwhile, in the summer of 2020, the NIH wrote a letter to EcoHealth Alliance because of rising concern over the relationship with WVI. As a result, the NIH suspended grants. But, WVI had already received $600,000.
“There is mounting evidence the COVID-19 pandemic started in the Wuhan Institute of Virology and the Chinese Communist Party covered it up. If U.S. taxpayer money was used to develop COVID-19, conduct gain of function research, or assist in any sort of cover-up, EcoHealth Alliance must be held accountable,” the letter from Jordan and Comer read.
They add, “It is incumbent upon grant recipients to ensure their work is performed within the scope of the grant, advances our national interest, and protects our national security. It is vital to understand if U.S. taxpayer funds were at all affiliated with a pandemic that has taken the lives of nearly 600,000 Americans so we can prevent similar future catastrophes.”
In the probe, the lawmakers are asking for all communications between all three parties to sort out exactly how the WVI spent the money. They also demanded a briefing by June 4th.
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