Angry Fauci lashes out at COVID-19 'lies'

·1-min read

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States' top infectious disease expert, has angrily confronted a senator during testimony on Capitol Hill, after an insinuation that the US helped fund research at a Chinese lab that could have sparked the COVID-19 outbreak.

Kentucky GOP Senator Rand Paul suggested on Tuesday that Fauci had lied before Congress when in May he denied that the National Institutes of Health funded so-called "gain of function" research - the practice of enhancing a virus in a lab to study its potential impact in the real world - at a Wuhan virology lab.

US intelligence agencies are currently exploring theories that an accidental leak from that lab could have led to the global pandemic.

"I have not lied before Congress. I have never lied. Certainly not before Congress. Case closed," Fauci told Paul before the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, saying a study the senator mentioned referenced a different sort of virus entirely from the one responsible for the coronavirus outbreak.

"Senator Paul, you do not know what you're talking about, quite frankly," Fauci said.

"And I want to say that officially. You do not know what you're talking about."

He added, "If anybody is lying here, senator, it is you."

It was the latest in a series of clashes between Paul and Fauci over the origins of the virus that caused the global pandemic.

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