Coronavirus update: Australia doubles down on China COVID investigation

Coronavirus update: Australia doubles down on China COVID investigation


Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt says the Morrison government supports a European Union motion for an independent investigation into the origins of COVID-19 in China.

The government has called for such an inquiry for some weeks to better understand how the coronavirus started in Wuhan, China to be able counter such pandemics in the future.

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But such an examination has sparked a harsh response from Australia’s number one trading partner, and further undermining a sometimes fragile partnership between the two countries.

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“We support the EU motion which includes an independent investigation, regulatory work on wet markets and also the potential for independent inspection powers,” Mr Hunt told Sky News on Sunday.

Minister for Health Greg Hunt addresses a press conference in the Main Committee Room at Parliament House on April 08, 2020 in Canberra, Australia.
Minister for Health Greg Hunt addresses a press conference in the Main Committee Room at Parliament House on April 08, 2020 in Canberra, Australia. Credit: Sam Mooy/Getty Images

Economic threats

Meanwhile, Queensland’s The Sunday Mail newspaper reports a federal parliamentary committee intends to summon China’s ambassador to give evidence and explain why China has “economically threatened” Australia before and after the coronavirus outbreak.

The joint parliamentary investigation was set up by maverick Queensland MP George Christensen without the approval of key cabinet ministers.

He believes “enough is enough”.

“This inquiry will be the first major look into Communist China’s infiltration of Australia, through rampant foreign investment and export market dominance, Mr Christensen told The Sunday Mail.



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