Pentagon-backed facilities made “biological weapons components” and tried to cover it up, Russian military says.
Moscow believes that laboratories in Ukraine funded by the US military were making biological weapons components, but that local staff was being kept in the dark about their research, a senior Russian general said on Thursday.
Lieutenant-General Igor Kirillov, who commands the Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Protection Forces of Russia, presented documents and imagery showing why the military has come to such a conclusion.
“We believe that components of biological weapons were being made on the territory of Ukraine,” said Kirillov.
He noted that the documents he was presenting “have the signatures of real officials and are certified by the seals of organizations,” for those journalists and experts in the West doubting their veracity.
One document, dated March 6, 2015 confirms the “direct participation of the Pentagon in the financing of military biological projects in Ukraine,” Kirillov said. The US officially funded the projects through the Ukrainian Ministry of Health, according to the Agreement on Joint Biological Activities. However, the evidence shows that the real recipients of some $32 million in funds were Ukrainian Defense Ministry laboratories in Kiev, Odessa, Lvov and Kharkov.
These facilities were chosen by the US Department of Defense’s Threat Reduction Administration (DTRA), and the contractor Black and Veatch, to carry out the U-P-8 project, aimed at studying the pathogens of Crimea-Congo hemorrhagic fever, leptospirosis, and hantaviruses, Kirillov said, pointing to a slide with the Pentagon’s request.
“From our point of view, the interest of US military biologists is due to the fact that these pathogens have natural foci both in Ukraine and in Russia, and their use can be disguised as natural disease outbreaks,” the general said.