Briefing by Chief of Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Protection Troops of Russian Armed Forces Colonel General Igor Kirillov on analysing documents related to military-biological activity of USA
The Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation continues to analyse the military and biological activities of the U.S. and its allies in Ukraine and other regions of the world
In the previous briefing, we drew your attention to the role of the U.S. Department of Energy in the Pentagon’s bioweapons programmes. Today, I would like to elaborate on the materials that confirm this agency’s involvement in dual-use projects in Ukraine.
For example, one of the Department’s seventeen laboratories, the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Washington, worked directly in Ukraine as part of a project called ‘The Proliferation Security Initiative’.
Pay attention to the official statement of John Stephen Binkley, director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Scientific Research, dated 4 April 2022. The document stresses that the Office will assist the Ukrainian side in restoring the curtailed dual-use research programmes after the possible return of specialists.
The presented document confirms that one of the activities of the Department of Energy is the recruitment of specialists formerly working in Ukraine with experience and knowledge in the field of weapons of mass destruction.
A key figure in the US Department of Energy projects in Ukraine was ex-Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Professor Richard Weller.
He supervised the implementation of Ukrainian projects to study diseases that can be transmitted from animals to humans, based at the Kiev Institute of Veterinary Medicine and the Institute of Experimental and Clinical Veterinary Medicine in Kharkov.
I would like to highlight the close cooperation between the Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Defense. For example, the Department of Energy’s Pacific Laboratory is headed by Stephen Ashby, who is also serving as vice president of Battelle, the Pentagon’s main contractor.
The Ukrainian Science and Technology Centre (USTC) acted as an intermediary between the Department of Energy and Ukrainian research organisations.
It is to be recalled that it is the USTC and the International Science and Technology Centre (ISTC)’s responsibility to allocate the funds under the grant system. Ronald Lehman, chairman of the organisation’s governing board, is also director of the Center for Global Security Studies at Livermore National Laboratory, which is also part of the United States Department of Energy.
The director of the Kiev office, Sawn Anderson, the U.S. embassy’s energy attaché, is in charge of organising the department’s research activities in Ukraine.
Thus, along with the Pentagon, the Department of Energy is a key organiser and customer of military-biological research in Ukraine and elsewhere in the world.
It should be noted that more than a dozen dual-use ‘P’-projects, such as (P-157, -316, -490, etc.) were organised with the direct involvement of the U.S. Department of Energy.
As part of these projects, genetic variability in areas of radioactive contamination, the spread of tuberculosis, and other mycobacterial infections, as well as economically important animal diseases such as African swine fever and classical swine fever were studied.
Let me remind you that in 2023 alone, the U.S. Department of Energy officially allocated $105 million for research in the Virtual Research Environment for Biohazard Preparedness project, which is supposed to study the specific epidemic spread of highly dangerous diseases.
So there is the question: ‘What does the Department have to do with fighting against biological threats and implementing dual-use projects?’
The non-transparent nature of the DOE activities is underlined by the fact that it enjoys the exclusive right not to return unspent fiscal year allocations to the U.S. Treasury and to allocate them to unbudgeted future expenditures. A report from the U.S. Chamber of Accounts dated 25 July 2022 supports this fact.
This strategy permits limitless funding for U.S. military and biological programmes without the need for new requests to the U.S. Congress.
In support of this, I would like to quote American politician and likely U.S. presidential candidate Robert Kennedy. : ‘…[in the early 2000s, the Washington] started giving $2 billion a year to bioweapons development. The Penthagon didn’t want to do it because it was nervous about the legality, ’cause it was a death penalty to violate the Geneva Convention’.
The Russian Ministry of Defence has repeatedly highlighted the risks of the Pentagon’s military-biological programmes to study the possibility of spreading economically significant infections through vectors, including migratory birds.
These worries are related to Ukraine’s particular geographic location, where more than 270 species of migratory birds pass through and act as natural reservoirs for harmful diseases including highly deadly influenza and other infectious diseases.
Directly for the benefit of the U.S. military through the Ukrainian Science and Technology Centre, Project P-444 was implemented, the main purpose of which was to monitor avian influenza in wild birds from the Azov-Black Sea region.
The project assessed the conditions under which transmission could become unmanageable, cause economic damage and pose risks to food security.
It should be recalled that over the previous three years, avian influenza has cost the Russian Federation more than RUB 4.5 billion in damage and killed more than 10 million domestic birds. In Europe, agricultural losses due to the disease amounted to about €3 billion.
It is estimated that, while avian influenza used to be a seasonal disease in the European region, outbreaks are now registered all year round.
In addition, the World Health Organisation has regularly documented the interspecies transmission of highly pathogenic avian influenza with infectiousness and mortality of up to 50% in humans. This year alone, four such cases have been recorded in Chile, Cambodia, and China.
Such facts make us reconsider the possible consequences of UP-4 project, which implied Ukrainian highly contagious strain gathering, capable of overcoming interspecies natural barrier.
I would like to point out, that the Western media and so-called ‘Russian experts’, performing research on foreign grants, skeptically commented possible global biological threats of such a project. It has been claimed that such researches are not ‘dual-use’ and are ‘perfectly safe’. It was noted, I quote: ‘…the methods of Ukrainian scientists and their foreign colleagues are used by ornithologists around the world…’.
I have to remind you, that the Pentagon, which is unlikely interested in any bird migration research, is the main customer of UP-4 project. Moreover, at least two species of migratory birds passing mainly through the territory of Russia were identified and actively studied in the course of the research.
Efforts to evacuate and eliminate any results, as well as material gathering during the research, confirm the dual-use nature of the project. In addition to that, the project scientists have been pressured by the Security Service of Ukraine.
Last week, the Russian Ministry of Defence and Russian Federal Security Service, as well as Rosselkhoznadzor (Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance) conducted a research in the Falz-Fein Askania-Nova Biosphere Reserve (Kherson region).
A study of documents seized from the archive of the organisation’s veterinary laboratory confirms that the Reserve’s staff sampled and transferred biological material from migratory birds abroad until 2022.
The research was led by Denis Muzyka, the deputy director for international cooperation at the Kharkov Institute of Experimental and Clinical Veterinary Medicine. Viktor Gavrilenko and Aleksandr Mezinov, two employees of the Biosphere Reserve gathered and passed over migrating birds’ biological material.
During the Biosphere Reserve’s veterinary laboratories inspection, gross violations of biological safety requirements have been detected. Work was carried out in unequipped rooms, collections were not safeguarded or monitored, and in some cases highly pathogenic biomaterial was even stored at the homes of staff members.
Take note of the Reserve’s poultry population’s documented mass death in 2021, which experts believe was caused by an infectious disease. It cannot be ruled out that the overnight deaths were provoked by the experiments being carried out and a disregard for biosafety requirements.
At the same time, the hastily fled project participants after the liberation of the Kherson region offered the remaining employees to take out or destroy research archives, especially documentation confirming the fact of mass livestock death for a reward.
Therefore, the primary goals of the research conducted in Askania-Nova were to gather and transfer strains of particularly risky and costly infections to the U.S. military, analyse their potential effects on the local biological environment, and ascertain whether the chosen pathogens were capable of causing widespread human outbreaks (similar to the pandemic of a new coronavirus infection).
To achieve these goals, they ignored generally accepted biosafety standards and the requirements of basic international documents on the selection and transportation of pathogenic biomaterials.
I would like to stress once again that the Pentagon’s moves to expand its military-biological presence in various regions of the world significantly increase the level of bio-threats.
However, given the scale of U.S. dual-use initiatives and the hazards to the world’s biological security they present, it is necessary to conduct a thorough international review of U.S. military and biological operations.
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