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Bioweapons in Ukraine, How dangerous are they?

Bioweapons in Ukraine, How dangerous are they

Ground Report | New Delhi: Bioweapons in Ukraine; A debunked conspiracy theory touted by Infowars and Twitter conspiracy theorists about US bioweapons labs in Ukraine has been seized by Russian and Chinese media.

“Biological weapons laboratories”, located in Ukraine but financed exclusively by the “US Department of Defense”, would be among the first targets of Russian bombardments, claim viral publications on the Internet since the start of Vladimir Putin’s offensive over Ukraine on 24 February.

It is unfounded: if the United States supports research to counter “biological threats” in Ukraine, including those due to viruses like the one at the origin of Covid-19, the laboratories of this country are not operated by the United States and are not intended to develop biological weapons but rather to prevent them, detailed to AFP American experts in defence weapons, confirming past statements by American and Ukrainian authorities.

Igor Kirillov, the chief of radiological, chemical and biological defence of the Russian armed forces, told reporters that the laboratories were allegedly involved in the production of biological weapons.

“The Russian Ministry of Defense has repeatedly drawn attention to military biological programs implemented by the Pentagon in post-Soviet countries, including on the territory of Ukraine, where a network of more than 30 biological laboratories was formed, which can be divided into research and sanitary-epidemiological,” Kirillov said.

Following the tweet, the QAnon-linked Infowars platform published an article titled: “Russian strikes targeting US-run bio-labs in Ukraine? Citing information from various Twitter posts, the article claimed that US bioweapons labs “said to be operating in many cities recently attacked by Russia.”

Allegations claiming that Ukrainian laboratories aim to produce biological weapons and are therefore financed by the United States have been circulating on the Internet for several years. At the end of April 2020, the American embassy in Ukraine had thus published a press release in which it denounced ” Russian disinformation concerning the strong American-Ukrainian partnership aimed at reducing biological threats “.  

” In Ukraine, the Biological Threat Reduction Program, developed by the U.S. Department of Defense in association with the Ukrainian government, works to (…) secure pathogens and toxins of concern to the security of Ukrainian government facilities, while enabling peaceful research and development of vaccines,” the statement said.

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“ We are also working with our Ukrainian partners to ensure that Ukraine can detect and report outbreaks caused by dangerous pathogens before they pose a threat to security or stability. Our joint efforts are helping to ensure that dangerous pathogens do not fall into the wrong hands “, it is further specified.

At the beginning of May 2020, the Security Service of Ukraine (which is equivalent to the secret service of the Ukrainian state), had also deplored that ” recently, false information on the alleged activities of American military biological laboratories in Ukraine (have) been disseminated in the media and on social networks ” in a press release posted on Facebook.

Kirillov gave the following example: since 2021, the Pentagon has been implementing the project “Diagnosis, surveillance and prevention of zoonotic diseases in the Ukrainian Armed Forces” with total funding of $11.8 million; in 2020-2021, the German Ministry of Defense conducted a study on the pathogens of the Congo-Crimean haemorrhagic disease in Ukraine. fever, leptospirosis, meningitis, hantavirus within the framework of the Ukrainian-German initiative to ensure biological security at the external borders of the European Union.

Under the pretext of testing ways to treat and prevent coronavirus infection, several thousand serum samples from patients, mainly those of Slavic ethnicity, were sent from Ukraine to the Walter Research Institute Reed from the U.S. Army, he added. .

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