WHO’s director said he was disappointed at the lack of permission for the experts to travel to Wuhan, where the pandemic first appeared a year ago.

TAIPEI CITY, Taiwan — China said Wednesday it was still negotiating with the World Health Organization the dates and itinerary for a visit by international experts looking into origins of COVID-19, after the head of the agency criticized Beijing for not finalizing permissions for the mission.

China’s position on the hunt for the origins of the pandemic “has always been open and responsible,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying told a daily news briefing in Beijing.