The Global Times tabloid, part of the ruling Communist Party's People's Daily newspaper group, said late on Wednesday that if the "lab leak theory" is to be further investigated, the United States should also allow investigators into its own facilities, including the lab at Fort Detrick.
Republicans have focused on the lab-leak theory, particularly officials in former President Donald Trump's government, including his secretary of state, Michael Pompeo, and former Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert Redfield.
The move followed President Joe Biden's directive to U.S. intelligence agencies to investigate competing theories on how the virus first emerged - through animal contact at a market in Wuhan, China, or through accidental release from a research laboratory in the same city.
"Very clearly they are trying to internationalise their way out of the jam they are in", said Jamie Metzl, senior fellow at the Atlantic Council think tank, who has been campaigning for a new independent investigation. The source of that early intelligence or how reliable USA agencies rate it is not known.More news: NY prosecutors probing Trump form grand jury
In a statement, Biden said he had "asked for areas of further inquiry that may be required including specific questions on China".
Agencies should "redouble their efforts to collect and analyse information that could bring us closer to a definitive conclusion, and to report back to me in 90 days", Biden said in a statement released by the White House.
Biden said while two elements in the intelligence community lean toward the former scenario and one leans toward the latter, "the majority of elements do not believe there is sufficient information to assess one to be more likely than the other".
After the report was released, however, World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus insisted all theories remained on the table.More news: South Sudan to return 72 000 Covid vaccines to Covax
Zhao said that the US ranks first globally in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and fatalities, which have reached around 33 million and 600,000 respectively.
"To politicize origin tracing, a matter of science, will not only make it hard to find the origin of the virus, but give free rein to the "political virus" and seriously hamper worldwide cooperation on the pandemic", the spokesperson said.
Mr Zhao also said the U.S. must open itself up to investigations into its biological laboratories, including at the military's Fort Detrick base.
"Such study and investigation shall be full, transparent and evidence-based, and shall get to the bottom to make everything clear", the spokesperson said.More news: Italian cable auto crash kills nine, injures two children
"Similar research needs to be done if we are going to find the true wildlife origin" of covid-19, said Daszak, president of the New York-based EcoHealth Alliance.