In a quest for transparency and accountability, Moscow has consistently sought clarifications from Kiev and Washington regarding their military bio laboratories situated on Ukrainian soil. The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) has taken a significant step towards shedding light on this matter by publishing a new list of individuals representing government agencies and companies from the United States and Ukraine, all implicated in dual-use bioresearch initiatives. At a recent news briefing, the Commander of the Russian Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Protection Troops, Lt. Gen. Igor Kirillov, unveiled this crucial information.
The Need for Transparency
The MoD had previously identified key participants in American military-biological programs, including officials from the US Department of Defense, biotechnology corporations, and Pentagon contractors. Lt. Gen. Kirillov emphasized the importance of transparency, stating, "Today we would like to supplement this list with representatives of government agencies and private companies in the US and Ukraine."
Notable Individuals on the List
The updated list includes prominent figures such as Thomas Wohl, Vice President and official representative of the Kansas-based Black & Veatch engineering company in Ukraine. Mr. Wohl oversaw the implementation of the PAX electronic system, designed for managing and monitoring biological agents and materials. Also featured is Kevin Olival from the US-based EcoHealth Alliance non-profit organization, directly involved in Pentagon projects focused on studying zoonotic diseases spread by bats.
Among the new additions is Mikhail Usaty, Deputy Head of the Sanitary and Epidemiological Department of the Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF). Usaty has overseen the organization of work within the framework of DITRA projects in Ukraine since 2018. Tatyana Kiryazova, the Executive Director of the Ukrainian Institute of Public Health Policy, was responsible for supervising a joint Kiev-Washington study on pathogens conducted at the Odessa-based Mechnikov Research Anti-Plague Institute.
Seeking Answers and Cooperation
Lt. Gen. Kirillov emphasized that the Russian Investigative Committee would receive information about the organizers and participants in the US military-biological program. Moscow's attempts to seek answers have been met with silence, leaving many questions unanswered. Kirillov pointed out that "since the Russian side convened a consultative meeting on Article 5 of the Biological Weapons Convention, Moscow has received no answers on these questions, which could clarify the situation."
Article 5 of the Biological Weapons Convention calls for signatories to consult and cooperate with each other in resolving questions related to the convention's provisions.
Shifting Focus to Africa
In a noteworthy development, Kirillov revealed that Russia's efforts to expose the US' alleged illegal military and biological activities, combined with the worsening epidemic situation in European-based biological facilities, prompted the Biden administration to relocate dual-use research to African countries. According to Kirillov, documents obtained by the Russian side confirm "the activities of key Pentagon contractors on the African continent, namely, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Sierra Leone, Cameroon, Uganda, and South Africa."
Key US government-related customers, including the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), the National Security Agency, and the US State Department, have been implicated in these activities, according to Kirillov.
A Disturbing Revelation
Furthermore, Kirillov underscored that by refusing to collaborate on a verification protocol under the Biological Weapons Convention, the US is establishing administrative and technical structures that could potentially be involved in dual-use research, including for offensive purposes.
The Russian Ministry of Defense previously disclosed that the US had allocated over $200 million to establish biological laboratories in Ukraine, ostensibly participating in American military programs. Moscow has also alleged the involvement of Rosemont Seneca, an investment fund linked to Hunter Biden, in financing these projects. Despite Washington's persistent denial of the existence of such facilities, Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland admitted last year that "biological research facilities" linked to the US were indeed operating in Ukraine.
The revelations from documents made public by the Russian military raise concerns about the scope of research conducted in these bio labs, including studies on the possible proliferation of diseases such as typhus and hepatitis in the region, as well as the potential use of wild migratory birds for transmitting highly pathogenic avian influenza.
In summary, Moscow's call for transparency regarding military bio laboratories in Ukraine continues to raise important questions and concerns about the nature and extent of these activities. The publication of key individuals involved in these programs underscores the need for cooperation and dialogue on this critical issue.
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