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The mysterious genesis of the SARS-CoV-2 virus has once again taken centre stage. As United States Studies Centre (USSC) Non-Resident Senior Fellow Dr John Lee told Sky News, 'The lab theory is starting to look a lot more credible than most people assumed it was a few months ago.' On Monday, the Wall Street Journal revealed that in 2012 the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV) took samples from bats in a mine after six workers got sick and three died, and in November 2019 three WIV workers became seriously ill and sought treatment in hospital. Now 18 scientists, including one from WIV, are calling for further investigation into the lab leak theory.

Australia was an early voice in calling for an internationally-led investigation into the origins of the virus. Increased economic coercion from China resulted. Non-Resident Senior Fellow Dr John Lee assesses that China's continued pressure on Australia is only digging itself a deeper hole, strengthening the relationship between Australia and the United States and setting a model for American support of other allies.