Moscow believes that Washington needs to inform the international community about the military biological programs that were implemented in Ukraine, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing on Wednesday.
“We confirm that the facts that came to the light during Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine point to the Kiev regime’s attempts to urgently cover up the traces of military biological programs,” she noted. “It was not about peaceful scientific research because these programs were financed by the US Department of Defense,” she added.
“We believe that the US Department of Defense and the US presidential administration need to inform the international community – doing it officially rather than through their ‘talking heads’ – about the programs that were implemented in Ukraine,” Zakharova emphasized.
“Your research, your biological materials, particularly used for military purposes, turned up in Ukraine in the first place. What were you doing there? It is another continent, you don’t share a common border and there are no bases of yours,” she noted. The Russian diplomat stressed that the world needed to know what the US intended to do there, what was the goal and how much investment had been made into Ukraine’s biological activities.
Zakharova went on to say that employees of the Ukrainian biological laboratories had provided documents about the emergency destruction of highly dangerous pathogens, including those of plague, anthrax and cholera, which had taken place on February 24. “It can be concluded that components of biological weapons were being developed in Ukrainian biolabs located in close vicinity of our border. The emergency destruction of dangerous pathogens on February 24 was a necessary step aimed at concealing the fact that Ukraine and the US had violated Article 1 of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention,” the Russian diplomat explained, adding: “The question is: how was it all destroyed? And was it completely destroyed?”
According to Zakharova, it confirms Russia’s grievances with regard to the military and biological activities of the US and its allies in post-Soviet countries. “In order to address these grievances, we consider it possible to activate Articles 5 and 6 of the above-mentioned convention, which say that states parties should hold consultations on resolving any issues related to the convention’s goal and the implementation of its provisions, as well as cooperate in investigating possible violations of obligations under the convention,” she added.
Washington deliberately kept undermining talks on control over biological research in order to make inspections of laboratories impossible, Zakharova stressed.
“It happened in the spring of 2021, when we pointed out that Washington kept blocking efforts to resume talks on the relevant protocol though the special group’s mandate remained in effect,” she noted. According to Zakharova, Russia expected common sense to prevail in the US and the country, which is one of the depositories of the Biological Weapons Convention, “will make a constructive contribution to strengthening the document instead of blocking work on it.” “However, now it is clear that they [the Americans] deliberately undermined this work in order to make it impossible to inspect the labs and facilities where they were conducting research, development and other activities related to biological weapons,” the Russian diplomat noted.