The UN Security Council has addressed this Friday Russia’s complaint of alleged “biological military activities of the United States on the territory of Ukraine”, something that Washington and Kiev deny. Contrary to previous calls, based on specific issues, the highest executive body of the organization has echoed accusations without evidence about weapons of mass destruction, as it did on the eve of the Iraq war in 2003. From the meeting of disturbing questions arise today: the privileged speaker of the UN for “a campaign of disinformation and propaganda”, as it has been described by the majority of the 15 members; the self-criticism of some countries, such as Ireland and the United Kingdom, even regretting the call for giving fuel to the Kremlin’s message, and Russia’s direct confrontation with the United States.
As Western countries have denounced in the Council, today propaganda and misinformation have taken a step further in the inner sanctum from the ONU. The extraordinary session was convened this Thursday at the request of Russia, a permanent member of the Council and therefore with the right of veto. After half a dozen meetings in recent days, all of them inconclusive, the Council had not scheduled any activity this Friday until the Russian request forced the agenda. Of the 15 members, only China, also with the right of veto, has echoed the Russian theory, urging the Council to “properly address Russia’s concerns” while deflecting attention by stressing the international community’s concern about the ” 336 US military biological laboratories”.
Despite the insistence of the UN high representative for disarmament, Izumi Nakamitsu, that the UN “is not aware of any biological weapons program” in Ukraine, and that instead the possibility of an accident at nuclear power plants “grows day by day to day”, the Russian ambassador to the UN, Vasili Nebenzia, has repeated, without presenting evidence, the argument of the Kremlin, which ensures that its Army has discovered evidence in Ukraine of an “urgent elimination” of traces. “In Ukraine there was a network of 30 biological laboratories supervised by the US in which very dangerous experiments were carried out, and the results of which were sent to US institutions. The objective was to study the possibility of spreading plague, anthrax and cholera pathogens. through birds, bats and people”. Nebenzia maintained that the documents are in the possession of the Russian Defense Ministry.
The US ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, responded to the accusations in a forceful way. “Russia has requested the meeting for the sole purpose of lying and spreading disinformation,” he declared, recalling that it is Russia that uses this arsenal, as evidenced by nerve agent attacks on opponents such as Alexei Navalni, who was poisoned in 2020, and the former spy Sergei Skripal, convicted of high treason, and his daughter Yulia, two years earlier. “Russia is trying to create an alternate reality, for example when it denies having bombed the Mariupol maternity hospital. What is worrying is that the Russian request for this meeting is potentially a false flag effort. [una acción hostil orquestada para culpar al enemigo]just what we had been warning about.”
The ambassador of the United Kingdom, Barbara Woodward, pointed out that the Security Council is there to deal with threats to world peace and security, not to discuss issues that she very diplomatically described as “meaningless”. “Russia is sinking to new depths today,” she said of the Kremlin offensive. Ambassador Nebenzia regretted in the reply that the Council did not seriously address Moscow’s complaints.
The White House spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, rejected this Thursday the existence of the biological collaboration program and even warned that the accusation could constitute a false pretext to use chemical or biological weapons in Ukraine, in response to the threat of the alleged laboratories. . “Russia has a large biological and chemical weapons program” and a “history of fabricating lies,” she declared Thursday. Hours later, the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, rejected the existence of chemical weapons in his country “or other weapons of mass destruction”, stating that such accusations are part of Russian propaganda. “This really worries me because if you want to know what the Russian plans are, you have to look at what they accuse others of,” Zelensky said in a video.
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Despite the Russian propaganda objective, it is not the first time that the lure of the existence of weapons of mass destruction reaches the UN Security Council. The most notorious and tragic case was that of the arsenal supposedly in the hands of Saddam Hussein, whose presumed existence justified the 2003 war, followed by the invasion of Iraq. On November 8, 2002, the Council approved resolution 1441, “recognizing the threat that (…) the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and long-range missiles pose to international peace and security.”
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