On social media and in the Arab news media, rumors spread about the Pentagon running secret laboratories in Ukraine, which were used to make deadly diseases and biological weapons, which the Kremlin has been promoting for years.
On Monday, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that the Ukrainian defense forces, in collaboration with the Azov battalion, had “operated a reactor at the nuclear research plant at the Kharkiv Institute of Physics and Technology.”
The statement was based on a “warning” issued by the Russian media, including by the Kremlin’s news site Sputnik.
Also, the Russian Defense Ministry on Monday confirmed that it has documented evidence of cooperation between Ukraine and the United States in developing biological weapons, and that the United States is funding more than $ 200 million in biological laboratories in Ukraine. Published by the official Russian news agency (TASS).
“In the context of a special military operation, traces were uncovered of the implementation of a military biological project in Ukraine with funding from the US Department of Defense,” said Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov, who issued the statement.
According to the TASS, the United States and Ukraine sought to destroy specimens of “plague, anthrax, tularemia, cholera and other deadly diseases” on February 24, in which Russian forces occupied Ukraine and “already have everything needed to pursue a biological military program. From Ukraine,” the official Russian agency said. Reported.
Without clarifying the details of these documents or their source, TASS released images of Russian-language documents claimed by the Ministry of Defense to be evidence of a biological weapons program.
History of lie
On October 4, 2018, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced that the United States was operating a secret biological weapons laboratory in Georgia, in violation of international agreements and as a direct security threat to Russia.
According to the Associated Press, General Igor Girillov, head of the Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defense Forces, told a conference that the laboratory in Georgia was part of a network of US laboratories stationed near the borders of Russia and China.
In response to the allegations, then-Pentagon spokesman Eric Bahோன்n strongly denied the allegations, calling them “inventions of Russia’s imaginary and misleading propaganda against the West” and “obvious attempts to divert attention from Russian misconduct on many fronts.”
The Associated Press said the allegations were largely based on the US-funded Richard G. Luger Center for Public Health Research in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi. Documents released by Kirillov, former Georgian Minister of Defense Igor Jorkatse, show that the facility was fully funded by the United States and that on paper the Georgian right was a cover-up.
“The United States did not develop biological weapons in Lugar,” Bahn said at the time.
The laboratory is a joint human and animal health facility owned and operated by the Georgian National Center for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC), not the United States.
“The purpose of the Luger Center is to protect citizens from biological threats and to contribute to the diagnosis, epidemiological surveillance and improvement of public and animal health for the benefit of Georgia, the Caucasus region and the global community.”
The center opened in 2013 and was named after former U.S. Senator Richard Luger. Prior to leaving Congress, the Republican Party was part of a two-party US effort to help secure the Soviet arsenal of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction after the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991.
In 2018, the company added: “KodaThe non-profit media argues that the allegations are part of the Kremlin’s widespread propaganda to discredit the United States in the eyes of Russia’s pro – Western neighbors Ukraine and Georgia. But those false accusations did not stop there.
Adaptation of lies to justify the invasion of Ukraine
On September 21, 2021, Nikolai Badrushev, Secretary of the Russian Security Council, said in an interview with the weekly “Argumentation I Fact” that “biological laboratories established by the United States around the world pose a threat to the health of tens of thousands of people.” . “
“The West is concerned about human rights, but in fact it is violating them on a large scale. The biological laboratories that Washington is setting up around the world are endangering the health of tens of thousands of people and thus violating their rights.” Badrushev stressed in the Toss statements.
Last January, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, in a speech to the State Duma, noted that “there are US military biological laboratories in most countries near his country,” and that it was very difficult to understand what these laboratories were doing. Even.
As Russia began its occupation of Ukraine in the early hours of February 24, the hashtag #USBiolabs began appearing on Twitter.
On the hashtag, pro-Moscow accounts repeatedly told the Russian story that the United States was running secret laboratories in Ukraine that produced dangerous diseases that could be used as a biological weapon.
A new report released on March 7, says Atlantic CouncilIn another attempt to justify the invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin again accused Ukraine of inciting Russia by developing radioactive bombs and biological weapons.
According to the Atlantic Council, the latest in a series of claims by Russian officials and the Kremlin over the past two weeks is that Ukraine is developing a radioactive bomb without proof.
In the weeks leading up to the invasion of Ukraine, US intelligence agencies warned that Russia was planning a vicious attack as an excuse for aggression and was spreading false propaganda on social media to portray Ukraine as an invader.
According to the Atlantic Council, the Kremlin has repeatedly used fake documents as part of its past influence activities, especially on misleading accounts that it continues to spread about biological weapons laboratories.
The Kremlin has a long history of accusing the West of creating biological agents since the end of the Cold War in 1991. In 2020, pro-Russian media outlets sought to blame the United States for the COVID-19 epidemic, suggesting that the corona virus had been created. In a laboratory.
How did Russia distort the truth?
On February 24, a statementSnoopsThe fact-finding expert pointed out that “there was no evidence that Russia (US biological laboratories) targeted Russia when it launched its invasion of Ukraine.”
“This statement is another recurrence of a long-running misinformation campaign by the Kremlin and its supporters,” the statement said.
The site confirms that Russian rumors distort the fact that the decision was made by the Ukrainian Ministry of Health and the US Department of Defense (Pentagon). Agreement In 2005 with the goal of “eliminating the threat of bio-terrorism by placing protections on deadly pathogens from the Soviet-era biological weapons program.”
Biological laboratories in Ukraine are operated by the Ukrainian government in accordance with the guidelines issued by local law.
According to the Snobs website, there is no evidence that these labs were “established” by the US military, nor are they run by US forces.
In April 2020, the US embassy in Gaius denied the allegations and set a record straight for spreading false information in certain circles in Ukraine, reflecting Russian misinformation about the strong alliance between the United States and Ukraine to reduce biological threats.
She said Embassy At the time, the US Department of Defense said, “The US Department of Defense’s Biological Threat Reduction Program works with the Ukrainian government to standardize and protect security-important pathogens and toxins in Ukrainian government facilities, while allowing peaceful research and development of vaccines.”
“We work with our Ukrainian partners to ensure that Ukraine is able to detect and report dangerous pathogens before they pose a threat to security or stability,” he added.
In May 2020, the Ukrainian Defense Service (SBU) called on politicians to stop spreading false information about the presence of foreign military biological laboratories in Ukraine.