The FBI and Department of State didn’t provide documents by the deadline in response to a congressional request for information on the origins of the COVID-19 virus, but the agencies are expected to comply, according to the House panel seeking the information.
The information was requested on Feb. 27 by Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, and by Rep. Brad R. Wenstrup (R-Ohio), chairman of the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic. The deadline for providing the documents was March 13.
“We have not received documents at this time, but we are in communication with the agencies about the chairman’s request, and we expect compliance,” a spokesperson for the subcommittee told The Epoch Times on March 13.
The FBI declined to comment.
The select subcommittee is investigating “the origins of COVID-19 and the CCP’s efforts to cover it up,” according to Feb. 27 letters sent to FBI Director Christopher Wray (pdf) and Secretary of State Antony Blinken (pdf).
Wenstrup pledged “to leave no stone unturned to try to find the truth” about the origins of the virus in his opening statement to the subcommittee.
Fauci ‘Prompted’ Writing of Paper
The subcommittee’s majority staff issued a memo (pdf) on March 5 suggesting that Dr. Anthony Fauci, then-director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, “prompted” the writing of a paper aimed at disproving the theory that the virus could have leaked from a research laboratory.
“Based on my initial analysis of the data, I came to believe—and still believe today—that it indicates COVID-19 infections more likely were the result of an accidental lab leak than the result of a natural spillover event,” Redfield said.
The U.S. intelligence community drew the same conclusion, stating in a 2021 report, now declassified, that it held that view with “moderate confidence.”
The U.S. Department of Energy reached that conclusion in February but rated its finding with “low confidence.”
Proponents of the laboratory leak theory have cited the fact that the horseshoe bat, from which some say the virus crossed over to the human population, isn’t found in the Wuhan area. The bat is native to subtropical southern China, some 1,000 miles from Wuhan.
“Investigations are ongoing, and there is currently no consensus among scientists and intelligence experts about the origins of COVID-19,” Auwaerter said.
The State Department didn’t respond by press time to a request by The Epoch Times for comment.