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Lab leak theory of COVID-19 'highly unlikely': German expert

Xinhua | Updated: 2021-07-09 09:43

BERLIN - The coronavirus laboratory leak theory is "highly unlikely," said the head of Germany's federal research institute for animal health in an interview with local media.

"The high-security laboratories have special comprehensive safety technology" and "these protective measures are standard in such laboratories worldwide," Thomas C. Mettenleiter, president of Friedrich Loeffler Institute, told Focus Online on Wednesday.

"But there is, of course, the human factor. Mistakes can simply happen," Mettenleiter added.

"We don't know where the pathogen came from ... I don't believe that a deliberate change in the pathogen took place, but I can't rule out this hypothesis 100 percent either," the expert said.

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