Kiev might start using “biological weapons” as well, General Igor Kirillov has said
The Ukrainian military has used chemical agents to poison food on 17 occasions since the conflict escalated in February 2022, killing at least 15 people, Russian Lieutenant General Igor Kirillov said on Tuesday.
Kirillov heads the Nuclear, Chemical, and Biological Protection Troops of the Russian Armed Forces. He made the revelation in a speech to the 3rd Congress of Young Scientists, currently meeting in Sochi.
“We have confirmed that officials of the administrations of the new constituent entities of the Russian Federation were poisoned,” Kirillov said. “Moreover, we found a number of chemical compounds were used that were made, in most cases, exclusively in one country.” He did not specify which country it was, however.
Kirillov’s speech comes a day after Russia presented evidence of Ukrainian poisonings to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in The Hague.
“We possess irrefutable evidence of the US and their Euro-Atlantic allies supplying Ukraine with toxic chemicals and their delivery means,” Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Kirill Lysogorsky told the OPCW on Monday.
Kirillov also brought up the biological research the US had conducted in Ukraine, saying that Russian forces found strains of bacteria and viruses “from the American collection” of pathogens at some of these facilities.
There was a danger the Ukrainian military might start using biological weapons as well, having “failed to achieve any serious success” during its 100-day offensive this year, Kirillov said.
“The Ministry of Defense expects a shift in their activity towards non-standard forms of warfare, including the use of biological agents,” according to the general.
In a briefing earlier this month, Kirillov revealed that 46 US-funded biological research laboratories had been located in Ukraine prior to the current conflict. While Moscow succeeded in exposing these activities and shutting them down, he said, Washington seems to have moved some of the research to Africa since.
The US and Ukraine have insisted that the research was perfectly legitimate and peaceful, part of a Western-funded initiative to reduce threats “through the development of a culture of biorisk management” and eliminate nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons in the former Soviet Union.