By Josephine Kingswell 9:00 pm PST

Senator for Arkansas and military veteran, Tom Cotton says China should be held accountable and pay for the CCP virus that has become a pandemic.

“I have every confidence,” he said on Thursday, “America will once again marshal the resolve, toughness, and genius of our people to overcome the serious threat to our health and well-being posed by the Wuhan coronavirus.”

“We will emerge stronger from this challenge; we will hold accountable those who inflicted it on the world and we will prosper in the new day,” he added.

Cotton–a long time China hawk–as well as many other lawmakers, are investigating China’s handling of the CCP virus–a manmade coronavirus that is suspected to have leaked from a “super-laboratory” in Wuhan.

“They also claimed, for almost two months until earlier this week, that it originated in a seafood market in Wuhan,” he said. “That is not the case.”

The damage from the CCP virus could be “worse than Chernobyl,” says Cotton, who believes the Chinese government has been “lying about it from the very beginning,” in terms of what they knew and when, as well as the real numbers of infections.

The regime downplayed the spread for months, even forcing silence upon concerned doctors who tried to raise alarm.

“It could have been stopped in China before it started and it wasn’t, and the whole world is suffering because of it,” Trump told a daily White House briefing. “If they were knowingly responsible,” he added, “there should be consequences.”

China has been pushing back at the criticism. Zhao Lijian, a spokesman for China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has been pushing a conspiracy theory that the U.S. Army “brought the epidemic to Wuhan.”

Trump has suspended aid to the World Health Organization (WHO) accusing it of being “China-centric” after it repeatedly published the Chinese line on the virus, downplaying its seriousness.

Was the CCP’s actions “a mistake that got out of control, or was it done deliberately?” Trump asked this week. “There’s a big difference between those two.”