In recent weeks, the Russian Defence Ministry has peeled back layers of information about 30+ Pentagon-funded biolabs feared to be engaged in dangerous and illegal research into deadly pathogens in Ukraine. US officials and media initially denied that the labs existed, but a senior Biden administration official later confirmed their presence.
An investment firm connected to US President Joe Biden's son Hunter Biden has been implicated in the financing of the Pentagon's military biological programme in Ukraine, the head of Russia's Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defence Troops has announced, citing fresh documents.
"Incoming materials have allowed us to trace the scheme of interaction between US government bodies and Ukraine's biolabs. The involvement in the financing of these activities by structures close to the current US leadership, in particular the Rosemont Seneca investment fund managed by Hunter Biden, draws attention to itself," RCBD Troops chief Igor Kirillov said in a briefing Thursday.
According to the MoD's information, the fund has at least $2.4 billion in investment capital. "At the same time, a close relationship has been established between the the fund and key contractors of the US military, including Metabiota, which alongside Black & Veatch is one of the main suppliers of equipment for Pentagon biolaboratories around the world," Kirillov added.
The Los Alamos National Laboratory - birthplace of the US atomic bomb, has served as one of the chief curators of the US military biological programmes in Ukraine, Kirillov said.
USAID, Soros Foundations, CDC Also Involved, MoD Says
"The scale of the programme is impressive. Along with the Pentagon, the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Soros' Open Society Foundations, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are directly involved in its implementation," the officer said. "Scientific supervision is carried out by leading research organizations, including the Los Alamos National Laboratory, which developed nuclear weapons for the Manhattan Project. All of this activity has been carried out under the direct control of the Pentagon."
Kirillov accompanied his presentation with new Ukrainian-language documents detailing the operations of laboratories suspected of involvement in US-funded military biological activities, including a detailed listing of 31 laboratories across 14 settlements.
"This document was signed by deputy state secretary of the cabinet of ministers of Ukraine Viktor Polishchuk. The legal basis for its signature was an agreement on cooperation to prevent the spread of technologies, pathogens and information which can be used to develop biological weapons. The registration card identifies the customer: the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, and also includes a list of bio facility sites," the officer said.
The MoD also released a document from the office of the secretary of defense approving Project Concept UP-2, described as a 'multi-pathogen mapping' project which "includes molecular fingerprinting of pathogens endemic to Ukraine and strain transfer." The 2008 document was signed by Richard Douglas, who served as deputy assistant secretary of defense during the George W. Bush administration, and Arthur Hopkins, a deputy assistant to the Secretary of Defense for nuclear, chemical and biological defense programmes.
Ukrainian Troops Used as Guinea Pigs
Kirillov provided other new details on US military biological activities in Ukraine in his presentation, citing documents detailing the testing of unlicensed pharmaceutical products which did not pass licensing procedures in the US and Canada on Ukrainian military personnel under a programme known as 'Deep Drug'.
"Documents confirm an attempt to test previously untested drugs on Ukrainian military personnel [under the] Deep Drug screening system for pharmaceuticals which have not passed the licensing procedure in the United States and Canada. The special cynicism of the US sponsors of the programme lies in the fact that the developer -Skymount Medical Group, offered to purchase the system on a commercial basis, even though employees of the Ukrainian defence ministry were used as volunteers" for its testing, Kirillov said.
Kirillov also that over 4,000 individuals were involved in research under the previously detailed Project UP-8, and that according to a Bulgarian media investigation, 20 Ukrainian servicemen died and 200 hospitalized during experiments in the Kharkov laboratory alone. The officer suggested that such practices were nothing new, recalling that in 2010, authorities in Indonesia terminated biological research activity being conducted by the US Naval Medical Center in Jakarta over numerous violations and a refusal by US authorities to inform the Indonesian government about the results of their research. Kirillov also revealed that Pentagon-affiliated pharmaceutical firm Gilead has been involved in the testing of its products in Ukraine and Georgia.
Industrial-Scale Export of Biosamples
Russia's Radiation, Chemical and Biological Defence Troops have established that the US and its allies have exported about 16,000 biosamples from Ukraine as part of their military biological activities in the country. "Such large-scale screening of the natural immunity of the population was likely carried out in order to select biological agents that are most dangerous for the population of a particular region," Kirillov said.
The officer pointed to the taking of blood samples from 4,000 servicemen in Lvov, Kharkov, Odessa and Kiev for antibodies to hantaviruses under Project UP-8, and an additional 400 samples probing for antibodies to the Crimean-Congo fever virus. He added that in addition to tissue and blood serum samples, dangerous pathogens and their carriers were exported abroad from Ukraine. Over 10,000 samples were sent to the Lugar Center in Georgia alone, according to Kirillov, with labs in the UK and the Leffler Institute in Germany also serving as recipients, subjecting not only Ukraine but the entire region to dangers.
Kirillov warned that the spread of pathogenic biomaterials in Ukraine could lead to a new pandemic, saying that in the Russian military's view, "the current situation involving the spread of pathogenic biomaterials from Ukraine to European countries can cause death and create a hotbed of epidemiological instability the scale of which would be comparable to the COVID-19 pandemic."
The officer pointed to the Pentagon's record of causing health scares involving deadly pathogens, recalling that betwen 2005 and 2015, live anthrax spores were accidentally sent from the US Army Dugway Proving Ground to 194 addressees in ten different countries.
Krillov also pointed to suspected US interest in the means of transmitting anthrax through insects. "The interest of US military biologists in the study of insect vectors in the locations of cattle burial grounds appears not have been accidental, with researchers analyzing the results of an outbreak of anthrax in Yamal in 2016, during which cases of transmission of the disease through flies and horseflies were recorded," he said.
International Investigation Needed
The officer echoed concerns voiced by China's foreign ministry earlier this month about the real purpose of the 336 labs scattered across 30 countries being operated with US funding and other forms of support, and suggested that in light of the new information which has been disclosed, an international investigation is in order.
Thursday's revelations by the MoD follow a separate document dumplast week containing frightening details on some of the research feared engaged in at US-funded laboratories scattered across Ukraine, such as work studying the transmission of diseases through bats, 'Project Flu-Fly-Way', studying how wild migratory birds might be used as vectors to transmit avian influenza, and others.
The Russian military started disclosing details on the scale and scope of the US-funded network of biolabs in Ukraine on 6 March, reporting, citing documents, that the Ukrainian health ministry had given the order to scrub incriminating evidence on research into deadly pathogens including anthrax, the plague, tularemia, cholera and other deadly diseases.
US officials and media dismissed the Russian allegations, releasing "fact check" pieces explaining that the "false claim of US biolabs in Ukraine [is] tied to [a] Russian disinformation campaign." These same officials and outlets were forced to change their tune after US undersecretary of state Victoria Nuland confirmed that the biolabs existed, and that the US was "quite concerned" that Russian troops might take control of the facilities.