Editor’s note: This article has been updated to reflect a report that Twitter has suspended Dr. Li-Meng Yan.
Twitter has suspended the account of Dr. Li-Meng Yan, a Chinese scientist who fled for her life to the U.S. after doing early covid-19 research and claims she has evidence that the virus was made in a lab in Wuhan, New York Post reported.
Reports that the virus originated in 2019 from a wet market in Wuhan are “a smoke screen,” Dr. Li said Friday via video chat from a secret location during an interview on the British TV station ITV talk show “Loose Women.”
The virus “comes from the lab — the lab in Wuhan and the lab is controlled by China’s government,” she said, according to a New York Post report. “This virus is not from nature,” Dr. Li said, claiming that she got “her intelligence from the CDC in China, from the local doctors.”
On Monday, Dr. Li released a paper on the open-access repository website Zenote that she says backs up her claims and shows how the virus could be “conveniently created” in a lab in six months.
In it, she and three colleagues made unsubstantiated claims about the origins of the global pandemic, Newsweek reported.
“They don’t want the people to know this truth. Also, that’s why I got suspended, I got suppression (and) I am the target that China Communist Part wants to disappear,” she told Fox News host Tucker Carlson on Tuesday.
When Dr. Li tried in December to sound the alarm that cases were rising exponentially, she said she was silenced by supervisors at the Hong Kong School of Public Health, a reference lab for the World Health Organization. They did an extensive cover-up of her work and accused her of lying, she said.
She said she was first asked her to investigate a new “SARS-like” virus in Wuhan, according to the U.K. newspaper The Sun. When she said she reported back, she was told to “keep silent and be careful”.
“‘We will get in trouble and we’ll be disappeared’,” her supervisor reportedly told her.
Dr. Li fled Hong Kong in April to raise awareness about the pandemic and now she said she plans to publish scientific evidence proving that the virus was made in a lab in Wuhan.
“The genome sequence is like a human fingerprint,” she said on the talk show. “So based on this, you can identify these things. I use the evidence … to tell people why this has come from the lab in China, why they are the only ones who made it. Anyone, even if you have no biology knowledge, you can read it, and you can check and identify and verify by yourself.”
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Knowing the origin of the virus is critical, Dr. Li said. “If not, we cannot overcome it — it will be life-threatening for everyone.”
From the early days of the pandemic, reports have emerged of doctors being detained after trying to warn about the virus on social media, The Sun reported.
Journalists also had equipment confiscated after trying to report on the issue.
Dr Li said she had to leave Hong Kong because she “knows how (China) treat whistleblowers”.
Her social media profile had close to 60,000 followers.
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