An explosive interview with coronavirus whistleblower Li-Meng Yan left the Loose Women panel and viewers at home completely stunned.
Doctor Li-Meng Yan, a former scientist at the Hong Kong School of Public Health, appeared on the show on Friday from a “secret location” and claimed the virus came from a lab in China.
Viewers heard how virologist Dr Yan has been forced to “flee to the US for her own safety” and her claims shocked panelists Stacey Solomon, Jane Moore and Kelle Bryan.
Dr Yan, who claims China are ‘covering up the truth,’ insists the coronavirus did not come from the wet market, as widely reported all over the world, but was man-made in a lab.
She told host Christine “It comes from a lab in Wuhan” after earlier claiming “the market was a smokescreen – this virus is not from nature”.
Viewers at home were equally as shocked as the panelists to hear her claims.
“How has #LooseWomen got that coronavirus whistleblower on but she hasn’t been on the news? Would be HUGE if the virus was created,” one said.
Another said: “I’m actually speechless after listening to that lady about Coronavirus…I’m now very confused as to what the truth is #LooseWomen”
While one wrote: “This lady is very brave to speak out and tell the world Coronavirus was made in a lab. I hope she is somewhere safe & cannot be found! This is really quite scary! #LooseWomen”
When Dr Yan was asked if she feels under threat, the whistleblower – who said reports containing evidence would be published in the next few days – said: “I was told by people ‘don’t cross the red line’ or you’ll disappear. It was very scary but as a doctor I could not let it happen.
“I knew if I didn’t tell the truth I will be regretful.
“They say I’m a liar that I just keep a hamster in a lab.”
Christine Lampard said the interview would be one of a series of those “celebrating inspirational women from around the world”.
“Now over the next few months, we will be celebrating inspirational women from around the world with a series of exclusive interviews,” she said.
“And our first guest today has been making waves internationally after she became a whistle blower on the Chinese government over their handling of the covid-19 pandemic.
“Now back in December, Doctor Li-Meng Yan, a top scientist working in Hong Kong, was tasked with looking into a cluster of virus cases which we now know to be coronavirus.
“She claims she discovered a cover-up operation and that the Chinese government knew about the spread of the virus before publicly acknowledging the outbreak.
“Determined to share her findings with the world she was allegedly forced to flee to the US for her own safety and it’s from a secret location that she joins us today.”
Scientists say the virus has a “zoonotic” animal origin and not an artificial one thanks to the genetic material and evolutionary history of the virus, and understanding the ecology of the bats in question.
An estimated 60% of known infectious diseases and 75% of all new, emerging, or re-emerging diseases in humans have animal origins.
Covid-19 is the newest of seven coronaviruses found in humans, all of which came from animals, either from bats, mice or domestic animals.
Bats were also the source of the viruses causing Ebola, rabies, Nipah and Hendra virus infections, Marburg virus disease, and strains of Influenza A virus.
Loose Women airs weekdays at 12.30pm on ITV.