Australia backs US push on virus origins

·1-min read

Australia has backed Joe Biden's calls for a fresh investigation into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic.

The US president believes there is insufficient evidence to conclude whether the virus emerged from human contact with an infected animal or a Chinese laboratory.

Mr Biden has asked US intelligence agencies to take another look at the most likely origin.

Foreign Minister Marise Payne welcomed the White House statement but would not buy into whether Australian intelligence agencies held a view.

Senator Payne also noted US agencies were contesting the theory that the virus came from a laboratory.

"We will continue to work with our international partners including the United States, with whom we share concerns on this," she told ABC radio.

"The most important thing is that we are able to provide for the international community an assurance that a pandemic of this nature can't happen again because we do understand where it came from and how it happened, and that we do ensure we're all better prepared."