I recall early on they got a sequence of the original strain, which is probably termed "alpha" now under new WHO guidelines.
Anyway, it was pretty clear that it was just SARS after some evolution - changes mostly seemed incremental. Occams razor would seem to still suggest that it was as it always appeared to be: a long-threatened return of the same respiratory virus with some adaptations to let it break through this time and evade containment. The virus name indicates this: SARS-CoV2.
There is still the possibility of bio-error, that a lab handling SARS research samples may have accidentally let some escape, and that possibility is being taken seriously by some.
But it's less likely, in my opinion at least: the two vectors being "lab of trained technicians with specialised containment equipment" versus "much much bigger lab full of poachers with no training about zoonoses and no PPE".
As regards "bioterror", I would say that's practically outlandish. It's wholly unnecessary to explain anything about covid. And frankly, based on the horrific work done by the USA and USSR we know that deliberate effort can produce far more lethal outcomes. And if a less-resoirced group wanted to make a new outbreak I would guess they'd start somewhere other than a coronavirus. Yersinia Pestis would be a good place to start - did you know that it's basically unknown why the bubonic plague stopped circulating so widely in the late 1800s?
TLDR: The spread, mortality, etc. of COVID are quite consistent with a novel coronavirus. Bioerror is a less likely (IMO) possibility. The epidemiological community have been warning about new zoonotic pandemic outbreaks for decades and SARS and MERS were nearly it. In that respect, COVID's not special: just "third time lucky".
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