Below is a speed-translation of an article published in “Argumenty i Fakty” on 05.03.2022
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that, according to Russian data, the Americans are very concerned about the situation with their military laboratories in Kiev and Odessa. “The Pentagon in Ukraine has actively built two biological military laboratories and has been developing pathogens there. Now they are concerned that they will lose control over these laboratories,” the head of the diplomatic department said.
According to experts, during the years of independence of Ukraine, a dozen and a half American biological laboratories were opened on its territory. In particular, outbreaks of infections in the east of the country, which had not previously occurred there, are associated with their activities. And the beginning of the special operation of the Russian troops coincided with the expected commissioning of two such laboratories near Odessa and Kiev. That’s what Sergey Lavrov had in mind.
According to the papers – quite peaceful institutions
The US Embassy officially recognized the presence of American laboratories in Ukraine for experiments with viruses in April 2020. Then, the opposition deputies of the Verhovna Rada sent a request to Vladimir Zelensky, and this fact was confirmed. True, the Ukrainian Ministry of Health denied everything, but the American Embassy itself admitted that “the US Department of Defense, in cooperation with the Ukrainian government, is working on the peaceful study of dangerous viruses.”
It turned out that Ukraine gave the go-ahead to the Americans for the construction of biological laboratories after the “Orange” Revolution by signing an agreement with the US Department of Defense’s Military Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA). These laboratories were one of the points of the plan to pump up the country’s military infrastructure, although according to the papers they are quite peaceful research institutions working exclusively for medical purposes.
To be honest, Ukraine is not unique in this regard. The United States has more than 400 such facilities located in different countries, about 13 thousand scientists working with the most dangerous viruses are involved in the program, while they do not make any publications in scientific peer-reviewed journals. Thus, more than ten laboratories (they are called reference laboratories) were deployed in Georgia, where, according to former Saakashvili adviser Jeffrey Silverman, they worked, for example, with bubonic plague. In previous years, it was reported about the presence of American research centres in Armenia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan.
The official reason for the creation of such laboratories outside the United States is strict biosafety standards in America itself. In other words, scientific work with the most dangerous pathogens is prohibited and strictly controlled there. Developing countries are another matter.
“They just removed these dangerous laboratories from their territory. And now they are acting as if in a gray zone—” explained Igor Nikulin, a microbiologist, an expert on biological and chemical weapons, in an interview with MK. – In these laboratories, military virologists test their latest developments on a specific gene pool: on humans, animals, plants. And China, by the way, is also surrounded by American biological laboratories.”
Of course, we are more concerned about laboratories near the borders of Russia. After all, the territory of the selfsame Ukraine adjoins the densely populated regions of our South. And there is reason to believe that in some DTRA laboratories, among other things, ethnic biological weapons were developed – bacteria and viruses that selectively affect people of a certain nationality or carriers of a specific genotype. Being infected with such a pathogen, a person may not even guess that he is being deliberately destroyed. At the same time, other ethnic groups will be less sensitive to the pathogen.
For example, CIA Director George Tennet spoke about the need to create ethnically specific bioagents in 1999. And already in the XXI century, cases of collection and export of samples of biomaterials by foreigners were recorded in various regions of Russia. This was done under a variety of pretexts — for example, to create a family tree, identify hereditary diseases, etc.
Five years ago, Vladimir Putin publicly drew attention to the purposeful collection of biomaterials of Russians by foreign specialists. At a meeting of the Council for the Development of Civil Society and Human Rights in 2017 , he said: “Do you know that biological material is collected all over the country? Moreover, in accordance to different ethnic groups and people living in different geographical locations of the Russian Federation. Here’s the question: why is this being done?”
It is noteworthy that after the signing of the agreement with DTRA by the Ukrainian authorities, outbreaks of diseases that had not previously been observed there began to occur on the territory of their country. In 2011, 12 cadets with a diagnosis of swine flu were hospitalized in Harkov (one of the reference laboratories is located in this city). In 2016, several soldiers died from a severe form of this infection. And three years later, a plague-like disease was recorded in the Donetsk region. And again the servicemen suffered.
In July 2021, DTRA signed a contract for the modernization of two research centres in Ukraine, retrofitting them with equipment. Both laboratories (one in Kiev, the other in Odessa) were supposed to start work by the end of February 2022. But the Russian military operation thwarted these plans. A couple of days later, on February 26, information about biological laboratories in Kiev and Odessa was removed from the website of the US Embassy in Ukraine. And it looks like an attempts to cover their tracks.