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Business News/ News / World/  Elon Musk vs China: Tesla CEO warned against sharing Wuhan COVID-19 lab leak report
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Elon Musk vs China: Tesla CEO warned against sharing Wuhan COVID-19 lab leak report

The FBI has backed the claim, with director Christopher Wray stating on Tuesday that Bureau assessments showed a leak from a laboratory in the central Chinese city of Wuhan likely caused the COVID pandemic.

Elon Musk - chief executive officer of Tesla Inc - departs court in San Francisco, (Bloomberg)Premium
Elon Musk - chief executive officer of Tesla Inc - departs court in San Francisco, (Bloomberg)

As the Wuhan lab leak COVID-19 origin theory gains traction yet again, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been ‘warned’ against sharing the allegations. The remarks from China came via a social media post by the state-run Global Times newspaper after the business leader waded into the growing controversy. 

Musk had been responding to suggestions that Dr Anthony Fauci - the former Chief Medical Advisor to President Joe Biden - had ‘funded the development of COVID-19’. The original post had accused Fauci of being involved in the development of the deadly virus because he had funded 'gain-of function research' at the lab in Wuhan.

“He did it via a pass-through organization (EcoHealth)," the Twitter chief wrote. The nonprofit group had reportedly been awarded nearly $8 million in federal research grants to study bat coronaviruses in China.

Also read: Likely cause of Covid pandemic is lab leak in Wuhan, China: FBI director

According to an update shared by NBC News' Beijing bureau chief, the Chinese newspaper had said that Musk could be “breaking the pot of China" - a sentiment that carries similar meaning to the phrase ‘biting the hand that feeds you’.

An article published Tuesday by the official WeChat account of China’s Global Times also said that “ridiculously, anti-China forces in the United States are again hyping the rumors that the coronavirus originated from a lab leak in Wuhan" - citing Musk's recent posts.

It is pertinent to note here that Tesla enjoys a privileged position in China, owning a factory outright that last year produced almost 711,000 cars. This incidentally made up 52% of the US electric-vehicle maker’s worldwide output. Any misstep risks entangling the outspoken billionaire in a geopolitical spat that could hurt his business.

Meanwhile the FBI has backed the claim, with director Christopher Wray stating on Tuesday that Bureau assessments showed a leak from a laboratory in the central Chinese city of Wuhan likely caused the COVID pandemic.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Published: 01 Mar 2023, 06:35 PM IST
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