HONG KONG -- A French biosecurity expert who supervised the construction and accreditation of the biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) laboratory of the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) has dismissed the theory that COVID-19 escaped from the lab, a Hong Kong newspaper reported Friday.
The French expert, Gabriel Gras, put the chance of a leak from the BSL-4 laboratory at "zero percent," according to the South China Morning Post.
"The lab is of a high standard. It was my daily work to verify this, and as I had the background of safety (consultant), lab designer, and virology scientist, I was 100 percent involved," Gras said, stressing that he had "no doubt" about the safety of the lab.
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PARIS -- The European Union needs to build the framework of its strategic autonomy on economic, industrial and technological issues as well as military values, said French President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday.
"For me at the heart of these days to come is the European sovereignty," Macron told a press conference at Elysee on the eve of the Group of Seven (G7) summit in the United Kingdom from June 11 to 13.
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UNITED NATIONS -- Josep Borrell, the foreign policy chief of the European Union, on Thursday called for efforts to bring multilateralism alive.
"We live in a world where the demand for multilateral solutions is greater than the supply. We see more divisions, more free-riding and more distrust than the world can afford," he told a Security Council meeting on UN-EU cooperation.
"Rules-based multilateralism is a term that's perhaps well understood at the UN and in Brussels. Maybe it is not a simple, nor an appealing phrase. But our job is to bring it alive," he said.
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BEIJING -- A high-profile official has warned Australia could be a "big loser" if Prime Minister Scott Morrison failed to be more careful with his language on China, Australian media have reported.
Speaking on 6PR, a Perth-based radio station, Premier of the Australian state of Western Australia Mark McGowan noted, "We have a massive trade surplus with China which basically generates hundreds of thousands of jobs for West Australians, and we are the beneficiaries of that," according to the Australian Broadcast Corporation (ABC) on Wednesday.