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South East Asia was the source of Covid-19, not China. Even more specifically, it came from Thailand… from the famous Chatuchak market, or, as quoted correctly “a market LIKE Chatuchak”.

That’s the claims of a Danish epidemiologist Thea Kolsen Fischer, who was on a recent World Health Organisation fact-finding mission to Wuhan to examine the origins of the latest coronavirus pandemic. The claims were printed in Denmark’s daily newspaper Politiken this week and have half left Thai officials flabbergasted.

The paper poses the question… was Chatuchak Market, or a similar were market in Bangkok like Chatuchak, indeed “the place that brought the coronavirus to Wuhan”.

Chatuchak market, for those unfamiliar with the tourist trap north of the main Bangkok city centre, is a market for just about everything. It’s also locally known as JJs. You can find cheap knock offs, souvenirs, hardware supplies, decor and lots and lots of animals, dead and alive.

Thailand’s Department of Disease Control held a media conference yesterday to refute the claims, claiming that it regularly tests animals at the market. The spokesperson also responded to an earlier news article by Russia’s Sputnik news agency suggesting that a similar strain of the novel coronavirus found in bats in Thailand appeared to resemble Sars-CoV-2… Covid-19.

Citing a new study published in Nature Communications, the Sputnik news agency claimed there are bats in Thailand with a virus, a coronavirus, that matches the one that causes Covid-19. Given the much-less-easy to remember code name RacCS203, the new virus was identified in the blood of five horseshoe bats that had been tested in an artificial cave at a wildlife sanctuary somewhere in eastern Thailand.

Researchers at Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University have also conducted genomic sequencing on the virus and reportedly found that the virus shares 91.5% of the genetic code of Sars-CoV-2.

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