TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — China said Wednesday it was still negotiating with the World Health Organization the dates and itinerary for a visit by international experts looking into origins of COVID-19, after the head of the agency criticized Beijing for not finalizing permissions for the mission.
China’s position on the hunt for the origins of the pandemic “has always been open and responsible,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a daily news briefing in Beijing.
She said that China has a close cooperation with WHO. However, the dates and itinerary need to be finalized, she said.
“The origins problem is very complex. To ensure that the work of the global experts group in China is successful, we need to carry out the necessary procedures and relevant concrete plans. Currently, both sides are still in negotiations on this,” Hua said. “I understand that it’s not just a visa problem and the actual date and itinerary. Both sides are still in close communication.”