Some nations unable to critically assess biolabs in Ukraine: Russia
Russia's Ambassador to the US focuses on countries not bothered by the frequency of outbreaks of diseases in Ukraine caused by pathogens.
Some countries have lost the ability to critically assess the situation regarding the biological laboratories in Ukraine and appear to be indifferent about the intended transfer of the US Defense Department's unfinished biological programs from Ukraine to third countries, Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov said in an interview.
"Some states lost the ability to look at the situation critically a long time ago," Antonov told Newsweek. "They are not bothered by the fact that in Ukraine the outbreaks of diseases caused by the above-mentioned pathogens have become more frequent. Neither do they question the Pentagon's intentions to transfer unfinished programs from Ukraine to third countries."
In early September, Kirillov stated that the United States was planning on transferring its programs of biological research from Ukraine to post-Soviet republics, as well as Eastern European and Baltic states.
"The Pentagon is poised to shortly relocate the programs unfinished in Ukraine to other post-Soviet states, as well as to Eastern European states, such as Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, and the Baltic states," Chief of the Radiation, Chemical, and Biological Defense Forces of the Russian Armed Forces, Igor Kirillov said.
The Russian MoD presented on September 19 evidence in Geneva proving that the US has military-biological activity in Ukraine.
The US admitted to having carried out biological activities in Ukraine. However, it claimed that it was in support of the BWC, and according to US State Department spokesperson Ned Price, technical experts from the United States worked with Ukrainian delegations and "unambiguously" explained their cooperation.
Moscow announced back in May that it would activate Articles 5 and 6 of the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) to investigate the Biolabs in Ukraine after it accumulated evidence indicating that the US and Ukraine are both in violation of the BWC.
Antonov said the US Defense Department-funded biological research was done in Ukraine with "a glaring case of biosafety neglect" and does not abide by the Biological Weapons Convention (BTWC). He demanded Washington provide answers regarding the biological laboratories in Ukraine as well as in other countries, noting that the facilities do not satisfy the US' international commitments.
"The risks posed by biological agents, including their falling into the wrong hands or a laboratory leakage are on a par with nuclear and chemical proliferation," he said. "Rapid scientific and technological progress increases the danger inherent in dual-use research... Sensitive information on experiments aimed at the creation of hybrid, more dangerous strains may well be a target of cyberattacks. Not to mention the fact that no one is immune from a human error or inadvertent release of particularly contagious pathogens into the environment."
More than 50 US Defense Department-supervised laboratories are situated near the Russian borders, according to Antonov.
The number of such facilities worldwide stands at around 336 worldwide, according to the Chinese foreign ministry.
During the interview, Antonov added that research activities are being conducted under conditions of maximum secrecy, leading to the worsening of the epidemiological situation in the nations that receive US assistance.
"Washington and Kiev do not disclose their dubious projects - implemented since 2016 under the code names of UP-4, Flu-Flyaway, P-781- even in the annual reports under the BTWC," he said.
"Such behavior can only point to the fact that the United States and Ukraine have something to hide."
A draft resolution was submitted by Russia to the UNSC in an attempt to form the commission to investigate the claims against the US and Ukraine on compliance with the Biological Weapons Convention for activities in biological laboratories in Ukraine. It was not adopted, however, due to an insufficient vote count in its favor.