US developing biological weapons in Ukraine: Moscow
The director of the Russian armed forces' radiation, chemical, and biological defense units stated that there is evidence confirming the US involvement in the development of biological weapons on Ukrainian soil.
According to Lt. Gen. Igor Kirillov, the director of the Russian armed forces' radiation, chemical, and biological defense units, evidence collected by the Russian Defense Ministry once again confirms that the US is developing biological weapons on Ukrainian soil.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov stated that Moscow eyes the West's military and biological activity as a threat to Russia's security.
Ryabkov revealed that the US is massively building and upgrading microbiological laboratories worldwide, most notably in Ukraine.
Kirillov announced in April that the US had resumed the program for the construction of biological laboratories in Ukraine and is expanding the format to train Ukrainian biologists.
Kirillov explained to reporters that "The US defense ministry is actively studying these economically significant infections outside the national territory in biolaboratories located along the borders of its geopolitical opponents. This once again confirms that the United States is developing biological weapons components outside of national jurisdiction, including on the territory of Ukraine."
"Documents seized from a veterinary laboratory of the reserve confirm the involvement of the Kharkov Institute in the work within the framework of the US projects Yu-Pi-8, Pi-444 and preparation for the implementation of the Flu-Fly-Way project," the official maintained.
According to Kirillov, the initiatives aim to evaluate the conditions under which the spread of pathogens of economically significant illnesses might become uncontrollable, causing economic loss and posing food security issues, adding that the increased occurrence of bird flu in Russia is concerning, especially in light of a mass loss of birds due to biological experiments in Ukraine in 2021.
The ministry previously called attention to the documented fact of mass mortality of birds in the area of the Askaniya-Nova nature reserve in 2021, which scientists believe was of an infectious nature.
He claimed that the simultaneous killing of birds was caused by ongoing research and a disregard for safety norms.
"Against this background, we are especially concerned about an increase in the incidence of bird flu in Russia and in European countries, where, according to the International Epizootics Bureau, the disease has acquired a year-round character, and losses from it since 2021 have exceeded 3 billion euros," Kirillov said.
He noted that 32 avian flu outbreaks have been reported in Russia since the year's beginning.
Before the outbreak of the Ukraine war, workers at the Askaniya-Nova Biosphere Reserve in the Kherson area gathered avian influenza virus strains that might cross the interspecies barrier, including the H5N8 strain with a mortality of up to 40%, the Lieutenant added.
Additionally, Ukraine attempted to destroy biomaterials that were left in a biolaboratory at the Askaniya-Nova Biosphere Reserve. However, Russian military experts were able to find evidence of extremely virulent bird flu there.
It was discovered in the records collected during the special operation that the US Army's Walter Reed Army Institute of Research had been training Ukrainian people for the biological threat reduction program for numerous years.
Kirillov emphasized that although pathogens of especially hazardous diseases characteristic to particular regions are being studied, the US is also enhancing means of biological protection for its military troops.
"I will remind you that in October 2022, the United States unveiled a national strategy to counter biological threats. The document has a doctrinal nature and defines biological risk management as the US's vital priority," Kirillov said during a briefing.
In June 2022, the Pentagon admitted that the US government supported 46 biological research facilities in Ukraine for the past 20 years.
In a document titled 'Fact Sheet on WMD Threat Reduction Efforts,' the US Department of Defense for the first time revealed then the specific number of facilities its government has sponsored in Ukraine.