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Dr. Anthony Fauci said on CNN Saturday that he still believes the COVID-19 virus could have been caused by a “natural occurrence” if the definition of lab leak meant that someone was infected in the wild and went “into a lab,” was studied in a lab, and then “came out of the lab.”

“A lab leak could be that someone was out in the wild, maybe looking for different types of viruses in bats, got infected, went into a lab, and then came out of the lab. But if that’s the definition of lab leak, then that’s still a natural occurrence,” Fauci said.

He said the other possibility was that a virus “accidentally” escaped a lab after being taken from an environment.

The former top medical advisor to seven US presidents has been accused of lying to Congress about the NIH funding gain-of-function research at the Wuhan lab.

Fauci has maintained that the organization did not finance the study of how to make viruses either more lethal or more transmissible and said the research at the lab did not contribute to the creation of COVID-19.