British officials have ended including Chinese data in its daily briefings showing coronavirus figures by country due to inaccurate data from China.
The United Kingdom ended displaying the number of reported infections and deaths in China after Thursday, according to the Evening Standard. Some authorities believe the numbers reported from the Chinese Communist Party are fake or at least vastly downplay the significance of the deadly virus, which originated in Wuhan, China. Many of the world’s top officials have also criticized and questioned China for possibly lying or misrepresenting the figures as well.
Conservative British parliamentary members formed the China Research Group to “promote debate and fresh thinking” about the U.K.’s relationship with China.
“This data is used to judge the effectiveness of our own response, whether good or bad. It’s important we are comparing like with like, otherwise our own responses could be distorted leading to more deaths in the UK,” said the group’s founder, Tom Tugendhat, who is also chairman of the Commons foreign affairs select committee. “Clearly No 10 [Britain’s capitol building] believes the same as the rest of the world — that China’s data is unreliable and possibly false.”
U.S. intelligence officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, have also concluded that China has been faking its numbers, Bloomberg previously reported.
China is currently reporting about 4,700 deaths in the country from the virus, while the United States has more than 60,000 deaths and the United Kingdom has more than 26,000, according to the latest tracking data from Johns Hopkins University.
“The claim that the United States has more coronavirus deaths than China is false,” said Nebraska Republican Senator Ben Sasse. “Without commenting on any classified information, this much is painfully obvious: The Chinese Communist Party has lied, is lying, and will continue to lie about coronavirus to protect the regime.”
Experts at Hong Kong University published a study that revealed the number of infected in China could be at least four times the number it is reporting, which is about 83,000. The country has reported around 80,000 infections in the country for months now while the rest of the world’s number of infections has skyrocketed in that time.
China used several different definitions of what coronavirus really was.
If the fifth version of the definition was used earlier, the number of cases would be much higher, the researchers concluded, using data from the World Health Organization.
“We estimated that by Feb 20, 2020, there would have been 232,000 confirmed cases in China as opposed to the 55,508 confirmed cases reported,” the researchers said.
Chinese officials retroactively upscaled the number of fatalities by 50 percent last in Wuhan.
The Chinese Communist Party has also been accused of destroying coronavirus samples in order to prevent countries like the United States and the United Kingdom from being able to develop a proper response at an earlier time.
China has even been caught spreading disinformation about the virus’ origins, going as far as to promote a conspiracy theory that the United States planted the virus in Wuhan, American Military News previously reported.
“It didn’t report sustained human-to-human transmission for a month until it was in every province inside of China. It censored those who tried to warn the world, it ordered a halt to testing of new samples, and it destroyed existing samples,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said. “The CCP still has not shared the virus sample from inside of China with the outside world, making it impossible to track the disease’s evolution.”