The Pentagon creates biological laboratories in different parts of the world to develop “combat” viruses and drugs that neutralise viruses. Most of these laboratories are located in the territories of the post-Soviet republics along the perimeter of Russian borders. Outbreaks of serious infectious diseases among the population could be connected with these laboratories. One such laboratory is the so-called Richard Lugar Centre for Public Health in Georgia.
Moscow does not recognise the [OPCW’s] investigation team because its formation was illegal and outside the framework of the Chemical Weapons Convention.
This is a recurring disinformation narrative aiming to discredit the OPCW. The OPCW is an independent inter-governmental international organisation with 193 member states - including Russia.
The Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) was formed in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) as the voting results for the decision upon which its formation was based on were counted at 82 votes in favour and 24 against. The formation of the IIT was therefore adopted in complete compliance with the relevant standards of the CWC.
The Conference of State Parties adopted a decision on 27 June 2018 reaffirming “that those responsible for the use of chemical weapons should be held accountable”, and recalling the responsibility of the Conference under the paragraph 20 of Article VIII of the Chemical Weapons Convention to oversee the implementation of the Convention and act in order to promote its object and purpose and to review compliance with it.
In paragraph 10 of the decision, the Conference specifically decided that the OPCW's Technical Secretariat shall put in place arrangements to identify the perpetrators of the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic by identifying and reporting on all information potentially relevant to the origin of those chemical weapons in those instances in which the OPCW Fact-Finding Mission in Syria [“FFM”] determines or has determined that use or likely use occurred.
Pursuant to paragraph 37 of Article VIII of the Convention, the [OPCW's] Secretariat is bound to implement decisions taken by the Conference. In March 2019, the Director-General has accordingly reported that the Secretariat was establishing the IIT with a mandate for identifying the perpetrators of the use of chemical weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic.