Fb posts shared hundreds of occasions declare that French microbiologist Didier Raoult – who has promoted malaria drug hydroxychloroquine to deal with COVID-19 – has revealed that the illness was intentionally created by the US and China to kill Africans. Nevertheless, there isn’t a document of Raoult making such a press release and his workplace flatly rejected the declare. Scientists consider the virus emerged from a pure supply.
“Didier Raoult reveals that the Covid-19 was created by the US and China, on the finish of inflicting greater than 30 million of the useless in Africa (sic),” reads a Facebook post shared greater than 19,000 occasions because it was revealed on Might 12, 2020.
The submit claims the French scientist stated that the US and China “have created highly effective laboratories” alongside billionaire philanthropist Invoice Gates “with the intention of destroying Africa”.
An identical submit circulating in French was shared greater than 165,000 occasions earlier than it was deleted. AFP Truth Examine has archived it here.
Screenshot of the false declare shared on Fb, taken on Might 19, 2020
Didier Raoult has hailed malaria drug hydroxychloroquine as a therapy for COVID-19 sufferers, however a lot of recent studies have found the drug – which might even have opposed unintended effects – ineffective in treating the illness.
US President Donald Trump is a vocal champion of the drug and made the surprise announcement on Might 18 that he had been taking it for a few week.
Contacted by AFP Truth Examine, Raoult’s specialised infectious illnesses hospital in Marseille rejected the feedback attributed to him within the Fb submit.
The scientist “has by no means taken any stand on this topic,” the Institut Hospitalo-Universitaire de Marseille instructed AFP Truth Examine by cellphone.
In February, The Lancet medical journal revealed a press release signed by dozens of scientists around the globe which condemned “conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 doesn’t have a pure origin”. It pointed to numerous studies that “overwhelmingly conclude” the illness originated in wildlife.
“We stand collectively to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 doesn’t have a pure origin”
NEW: Assertion in help of scientists, public well being & medical professionals of China combatting #COVID19
— The Lancet (@TheLancet) February 19, 2020
Scientists consider the brand new coronavirus originated in bats earlier than passing to people in China’s quickly urbanising Hubei province, in all probability by way of a 3rd species.
Too advanced to create a virus
Contacted by AFP Truth Examine final month, Etienne Simon-Lorière, virologist on the Institut Pasteur in Paris, stated it might be “infinitely too advanced” for a scientist to create a virus.
“Even when probably the most good scientist needed to create a virus, it might be infinitely too advanced since you’d must create one thing solely new,” he stated.
“What you could possibly attempt to do is create one thing from the weather of a pre-existing virus, like SARS-CoV-1, for instance. However in that case, you’ll discover indicators within the RNA (ribonucleic acid, genetic code much like DNA) sequence that will correspond to elements of the genome of the pre-existing virus”, which isn’t the case with COVID-19, he stated.
Marie-Paule Kieny, head of analysis at France’s Inserm public well being analysis organisation, rejected claims the virus got here from a “laboratory manipulation”.
“The RNA sequence of SARS-2 CoV (the brand new coronavirus, editor’s observe) exhibits that the sequence of a bat coronavirus present in China, RaTG13, is the closest guardian to SARS-2, significantly strains which have beforehand circulated in Wuhan,” she instructed AFP Truth Examine final month.