Washington:President Joe Biden signed legislation requiring the US government to declassify certain information related to its assessment of the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic, the White House said in a statement.
Biden signed the COVID-19 Origin Act of 2023, which requires the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to declassify information on possible origins of the novel coronavirus responsible for COVID-19, the statement said on Monday.
Some US intelligence agencies, including the FBI, have asserted that the virus most likely came from a laboratory in Wuhan, China. Other agencies have instead pointed to a market in Wuhan.
The DNI is required to declassify the relevant information within 90 days of the bill’s enactment.
“I share the Congress’s goal of releasing as much information as possible about the origin of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19),” Biden said in a statement on the bill. “In implementing this legislation, my Administration will declassify and share as much of that information as possible, consistent with my constitutional authority to protect against the disclosure of information that would harm national security.”
The US will also continue to review all classified information related to COVID-19’s origins, including potential links to the Wuhan Institute of Virology, Biden said.