Report on pandemic origins delayed a week — WHO

People wearing protective masks to help curb the spread of the coronavirus walk at a shopping street Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)

A World Health Organization spokesman says a widely expected report by a team of experts who travelled to China to look into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic is “likely” to be pushed back until next week.

Spokesman Christian Lindmeier says the report was “simply not ready” and the team members who have been working with Chinese officials to draft it “want to get it right.”

“What we hear from the technical experts — from the mission members — is that the report mostly likely now will come out next week,” Lindmeier told a UN briefing on Tuesday.

The UN health agency previously revised its plans to first publish a summary report, then a longer version, opting instead to issue a single full report. The team leader, WHO’s Peter Ben Embarek, said this month the plans were to release the report in the week of March 15.