Amid unconfirmed reports about sources of coronavirus spread, some conspiracy theorists claim that a US Army reservist named Maatje Benassi brought the novel coronavirus into China’s Wuhan.
According to the news report published by CNN, Benassi, a mother of two, participated in the Military World Games, essentially the military Olympics, which was hosted by Wuhan, the Chinese city where the coronavirus originated last year.
“Maatje Benassi competed in the cycling competition in the event, suffering an accident on the final lap that left her with a fractured rib and a concussion. Despite the crash, Benassi still finished the race, but it turned out to be the start of something worse,” the report said.
Following which, YouTube videos claiming that Benassi was the patient zero of coronavirus were uploaded to popular platforms in China such as WeChat, Weibo, and Xinhua Video and are translated into Chinese.
The claims made by the accounts are also being supported by the Chinese Communist media, the report further said.
However, the suspect, along with certain US publications decline all allegations stating that despite never having tested positive for the coronavirus or experienced symptoms, Benassi and her husband are now subjects of discussion on Chinese social media about the outbreak.
“The claims have turned their lives upside down. The couple say their home address has been posted online and that, before they shut down their accounts, their social media inboxes were overrun with messages from believers of the conspiracy,” stated the publication.