More now on one of the main stories this morning – members of a World Health Organization (WHO) team being denied entry to China.
The team had been due to investigate the origins of the coronavirus in Wuhan – something agreed upon by Beijing in December following many months of negotiations with the WHO.
Two people had already set out on their journey – one has now turned back and the other is in transit in a third country.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the issue was down to a lack of visa clearances, and he was “very disappointed” that China had not yet finalized the permissions for the team’s arrivals “given that two members had already begun their journeys and others were not able to travel at the last minute”.
He added that he had been in contact with senior Chinese officials to stress “that the mission is a priority for WHO and the international team”.
Covid-19 was first detected in Wuhan in late 2019, with the initial outbreak linked to a market.
However, observers say China has now been seeking to distance itself from its early connections to the coronavirus, instead emphasizing its successes in combatting the pandemic.
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