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"I got to say, it's nice to finally put a series of faces to all your unpronounceable names."
Glenn Talbot to the delegates[src]

The Symposium on Alien Contagion was a conference organized by President Matthew Ellis in an attempt to find a way to deal with the increasing number of Inhumans.

Background

"You know who else does bad things are Humans, but you don't see any Symposiums on the Human Contagion."
"Humans, we know. Inhumans are brand-new territory. People fear what they don't understand."
Daisy Johnson and Bobbi Morse[src]
During the Inhuman Outbreak, the dramatically increasing number of Inhumans developing superpowers left the authorities without a clear method of dealing with these newly gifted individual, who could be either assets or threats. S.H.I.E.L.D. having being deemed a terrorist organization due to the HYDRA Uprising, the ATCU was created.[1] However, this new agency was also infiltrated by HYDRA and its leader Rosalind Price was killed.[2]
Bouncing Back 18

President Matthew Ellis tells Phil Coulson about the new ATCU

Once the ATCU was cleared of its HYDRA infiltrators, American President Matthew Ellis decided to keep the agency working as S.H.I.E.L.D.'s public face. President Ellis appointed General Glenn Talbot at the head of the ATCU.[3] However, as soon as HYDRA leader Gideon Malick learned this, he ordered Talbot's son to be kidnapped so he could blackmail the General into getting rid of S.H.I.E.L.D.

In an attempt to enforce international cooperation regarding the Inhuman Outbreak, President Ellis suggested to hold a conference named Symposium on Alien Contagion which would be hosted in Taipei, Taiwan. S.H.I.E.L.D. decided to infiltrate the symposium to find out who was working with Malick.[4]

Symposium

The Inside Man 23

Phil Coulson and Glenn Talbot arrive at the Symposium

"I'm gonna have to postpone this vote. Guards! It has come to my attention that we have a traitor among us. Arrest this man."
Glenn Talbot[src]
General Glenn Talbot joined the conference hall with Phil Coulson, who posed as Dr. Sean Lundwall, a scientist with expertise concerning Inhumans. During the reception before the actual symposium, Talbot and Coulson met with the other representatives, including Anton Petrov, Ellen King, and Xiao Chen. However, this did not help them to find Gideon Malick's associate as Talbot kept finding reasons to suspect everybody.
Petrov SAC

Anton Petrov suggests to create an Inhuman Sanctuary

Talbot then welcomed the delegates into another room and officially declared the symposium open. Coulson, still acting as Dr. Lundwall, explained that the Inhumans were not a disease and that they should be treated with compassion. Russian delegate Petrov agreed and suggested to create an Inhuman Sanctuary which would be located in Russia. Although the South African representative Nathi Zuma and the Taiwanese delegate Chen were in favor of the proposal, Japanese representative Haruto Yakimura and Australian delegate King were not as enthusiastic.
TIM Coulson double crossed

Phil Coulson is arrested

Zuma proposed a vote on the subject. Before they could proceed, however, Talbot stood up and declared that there was a traitor among them. He then turned on Coulson and revealed that his team had infiltrated the symposium. Malick joined the room and revealed Coulson's name, calling him the Director of HYDRA. Malick then showed images of Lash's victims to convince the attendees that Coulson was working for the extermination of the Inhumans. Coulson was removed from the talks to be imprisoned.

Later, Malick met with Petrov and supported his idea of creating an Inhuman Sanctuary, offering his assistance on the matter.[4]

Aftermath

"Why go to all this trouble?"
"I'm building an army."
"And another army will stand to fight them. You won't be able to convert them all."
"I won't have to."
Phil Coulson and Gideon Malick[src]
Phil Coulson was locked up in the basement of the Symposium's building as well as General Glenn Talbot, who was betrayed by Gideon Malick. After explaining that he was building an army of Inhumans, Malick ordered his men to kill Coulson and Talbot before leaving, but Carl Creel prevented the HYDRA operatives to kill them and released Coulson and Talbot.[4]

Anton Petrov returned to Russia and, with the support of Malick, he continued designing the Russian Inhuman Sanctuary, which would later be infiltrated by S.H.I.E.L.D. Agents Lance Hunter and Bobbi Morse. The project was eventually aborted.[5]

References

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