It is expected that the World Health Organization will release its report Tuesday on what it has learned so far on the origins of COVID-19, though it is doubtful the document will quell the questions and geopolitical squabbling that have arisen over those early days in Wuhan, China.
The Associated Press, having obtained a draft said Monday that the findings "offer little new insight into how the virus first emerged and leave many questions unanswered," though the news agency did say the research team provided more detail on the reasoning behind their conclusions.
The researchers listed four scenarios in order of likelihood for the emergence of the coronavirus named SARS-CoV-2. Topping the list was transmission from bats to humans through another animal.
The report is based largely on a mid-January 2021 visit to Wuhan by a WHO team of international experts. The Chinese city was where the coronavirus was first detected. Questions regarding the access investigators experienced have been raised by those skeptical of China's Communist Party.
While the U.S. has re-engaged with WHO under President Joe Biden, relations between the country and China are fraught on a range of issues, including how Beijing responded in the early days of the crisis in Wuhan.
Recently, Biden's Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the U.S. had "real concerns about the methodology and the process that went into that report, including the fact that the government in Beijing apparently helped to write it."
Robert Redfield, the CDC Director during the Donald Trump administration, said in an interview broadcast by CNN last week that it's his "opinion" that the virus leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology — which the draft report pegged as the least likely of the four virus origin scenarios.
While infectious diseases expert Dr. Anthony Fauci has said he doubts the probability of the leak theory, he and other U.S. health officials said Monday they wouldn't comment on the WHO report until they'd read it fully.