Mike Pompeo Says China Sought to Cover Up COVID-19 Severity, 'Enormous Evidence' Virus Originated in Wuhan Lab

Mike Pompeo
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks to the media, in the Press Briefing Room, at the Department of State in March 5, 2020 in Washington,DC. - Eric BARADAT / AFP) (Photo by ERIC BARADAT/AFP via Getty Images/Getty

United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said there's "enormous evidence" that COVID-19 originated in a lab in Wuhan, China, and the Chinese government went to great lengths to intentionally conceal the severity of the outbreak.

Pompeo told ABC News on Sunday morning that he agrees with President Donald Trump's recent remarks that he has high confidence the coronavirus originated in the Wuhan lab. He asked viewers to remember "China has a history of infecting the world" in addition to maintaining "substandard" laboratories. The Secretary of State said U.S. intelligence officials are continuing to investigate China's role in the spread of coronavirus, but added "there is significant evidence that this came from that laboratory in Wuhan."

ABC News' This Week host Martha Raddatz asked Pompeo whether U.S. intelligence officials believe China "intentionally concealed the severity of COVID-19" from the international community in addition to stockpiling medical supplies including masks. Pompeo went on to suggest COVID-19 was "man-made" but did not offer details.

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"We can confirm that the Chinese Communist Party did all that it could to make sure that the world didn't learn in a timely fashion about what was taking place," Pompeo said. "We've seen the fact that they kicked the journalists out. We saw the fact that those who were trying to report on this, medical professionals inside of China, were silenced. They shut down reporting."

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When asked whether he believes the Chinese were behind the intentional creation of the virus, Pompeo responded, "Look, the best experts so far seem to think it was man-made. I have no reason to disbelieve that at this point."

"There's enormous evidence that that's where this began. We've said from the beginning that this was a virus that originated in Wuhan, China. We took a lot of grief for that from the outset. But I think the whole world can see now," Pompeo continued. "I can tell you that there is a significant amount of evidence that this came from that laboratory in Wuhan."

The Office of the Director of National Intelligence this past week released a statement saying the virus did originate in China and the Chinese Communist Party proactively stockpiled medical supplies before COVID-19 spread internationally.

Earlier in the interview, Pompeo repeatedly declined to answer any specific questions about what U.S. intelligence officials knew regarding North Korean leader Kim Jong Un's health. Pompeo only said it's "not unprecedented" that Kim has been out of public view for extended periods of time and it appears he is "alive and well."

mike pompeo china coronavirus origin
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said there's "enormous evidence" that COVID-19 originated in China's Wuhan Institute of Virology and the Chinese government went to great lengths to intentionally conceal the severity of the outbreak. Screenshot: Twitter | ABC News

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Mike Pompeo Says China Sought to Cover Up COVID-19 Severity, 'Enormous Evidence' Virus Originated in Wuhan Lab | News