Globally, animals, including endangered animals, were found at wildlife markets, held in close confinement and sold for consumption, fashion, medicine and the pet trade.
"We urge governments to learn from this crisis and to ban the trade in wildlife for these purposes to minimise the risks of future zoonotic (animal-based) disease outbreaks”, said Delsink.
She said HSI, along with many other international organisations, has called on governments to urgently ban in the trade in and consumption of wild animals worldwide.
The organisation last month published a science-based white paper, "Wildlife Markets and Covid-19", addressing the links between zoonotic diseases and the wildlife trade.
It stated that animal-based diseases accounted for an estimated 73% of all emerging infectious diseases affecting humans.
In the paper, HSI recommended that all relevant governments with wildlife markets permanently ban or severely limit wildlife trade, transport and consumption.