China-Linked Twitter Accounts Claim COVID-19 Came From Maine Lobster

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Recently, immoderate China-linked Twitter accounts person been spreading misinformation astir the root of COVID-19, the illness caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, successful attempts to falsely property the origin of the microorganism to lobsters from Maine.

Marcel Schliebs, an Oxford University researcher archetypal noticed the misinformation run erstwhile the Chinese consul wide successful Kolkata, India, Zha Liyou, posted the claims connected Twitter, according to USA Today.

Schliebs, who is with the Oxford Internet Institute, studies disinformation, propaganda, and divisive governmental quality contented successful the online accusation ecosystem of the UK. He recovered that this tweet was linked to hundreds of Twitter accounts, immoderate existent and immoderate fake, spreading accusation and misinformation from a pro-CCP bias.

The Chinese Consul General Zha said connected Twitter connected Sept. 19 that the main fishy of the root of the COVID has been identified arsenic acold concatenation cargo.

“Major fishy of covid via acold concatenation identified: A MU298 of Nov. 11, 2019 carrying nutrient from Maine, US to Huanan Seafood Market, Wuhan, Hubei via Shanghai. During the adjacent fewer weeks, galore workers astir moving this batch of seafood got infected,” the station read.

The station was aboriginal removed.

A screenshot of the station by USA Today shows that the accusation was a translation of different Twitter station successful Chinese from an relationship named Dai Shihan.

Looking astatine mainland Chinese societal media posts connected platforms specified arsenic sohu.com and Weibo, the earliest mendacious claims astir the origins of COVID-19 pointed to Maine lobster from the United States.

After the World Health Organization (WHO) sent a squad to China and jointly released an inconclusive probe study successful March this year, successful the look of expanding planetary pressure, WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus said that WHO experts had encountered difficulties trying to get earthy information from the Chinese authorities.

Many countries, including the United States, person advocated for an autarkic probe into the root of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the CCP has been obstructing specified an investigations successful assorted ways.

Epoch Times Photo Jamie Lane packs unrecorded lobsters for overseas shipment astatine the Maine Lobster Outlet successful York, Maine, connected Dec. 10, 2015. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Kathleen Hall Jamieson, manager of the Annenberg Public Policy Center astatine the University of Pennsylvania, said that these mendacious narratives dispersed by pro-CCP societal media accounts are thing new.

“Early successful the pandemic, Chinese sources dispersed the mentation that SARS CoV-2 originated astatine Fort Detrick and was dispersed to China by U.S. military,” Jamieson told USA Today.

Schliebs echoed Jamison’s reflection successful his Oxford University research.

“Almost since the opening of the outbreak, the question of the root of COVID has been of halfway value to the Chinese propaganda apparatus,” Schliebs points out. “This coordinated cognition was intelligibly trying to beforehand narratives successful enactment with Beijing’s wide propaganda strategy and geopolitical objectives.”

After Schliebs sent the accusation to Twitter, the societal media level suspended the relationship associated with the misinformation.

Alex Wu

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Alex Wu is simply a U.S.-based writer for The Epoch Times focusing connected Chinese society, Chinese culture, quality rights, and planetary relations.