Bats, birds and biological weapons: Russia makes wild accusations at UN Security Council

The United Nations has said it has received no information that would back up the claim, but that hasn't stopped it from proliferating

AgenciesUpdated: Saturday, March 12, 2022, 08:45 AM IST
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Russian Ambassador to the United Nations Vasily Nebenzya holds up copies of photos while speaking during a Security Council meeting, Friday, March 11, 2022, at UN headquarters. The Russian request for the Security Council meeting followed a U.S. rejection of Russian accusations that Ukraine is operating chemical and biological labs with U.S. support | AP

United Nations: Russia has accused Ukraine and the US at the UN security council of a plot to use migratory birds and bats to spread pathogens.

The Russian permanent representative to the UN, Vasily Nebenzya, delivered a lengthy account of the alleged biological weapons plot, and said the birds, bats and insects supposedly intended to spread disease would cross Ukraine’s western border.

“We call upon you to think about a very real biological danger to the people in European countries, which can result from an uncontrolled spread of bio agents from Ukraine,” Nebenzya said. “And if there is such a scenario, then all Europe will be covered.”

The Biden administration, in turn, accused Russia of calling a meeting of the UN Security Council to spread disinformation as part of a potential "false-flag" operation for the use of chemical or biological agents in Ukraine.

The Ukrainian ambassador called Russia's allegations "a bunch of insane delirium.”

On Friday, Russia appeared to be pushing its offensive westward with authorities in Ukraine saying airstrikes hit two cities that had been far from Russia's main targets elsewhere.

Night-time temperatures in the besieged port city of Mariupol are below freezing, and the city of 430,000 has been without food supplies, running water and electricity for 10 days.

US President Joe Biden is expected to announce on Friday an agreement with other nations to revoke Russia's “most favoured nation” trade status, allowing for tariffs to be imposed on Russian imports.

Satellite images show a huge Russian convoy that had been mired outside the capital, Kyiv, has fanned out into towns and forests. The immediacy of the threat to Kyiv was unclear.

The UN Security Council will meet later on Friday to discuss Russia's baseless claims that the United States is conducting “military biological activities” in Ukraine.

The United Nations has said it has received no information that would back up the claim, but that hasn't stopped it from proliferating.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki has called the accusations “preposterous” and warned this week that Russia might use chemical or biological weapons against Ukraine. China, meanwhile, is amplifying the unsubstantiated and inflammatory claims about Ukrainian bio-weapons.

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