Disinfo: Secret US laboratories in Ukraine might have provoked cholera, Ukraine is under external US rule

Summary

The US Embassy in Ukraine has officially recognised for the first time the presence in this country of American biological laboratories for experiments with viruses. A three-page MPs’ request contained a request to explain the appropriateness of the presence of such laboratories. The request alleges that during the work of American laboratories in Ukraine, outbreaks of unknown and various diseases occurred from time to time, which led to deaths. Deputies of the Verkhovna Rada claim that from the laboratories periodically, for one reason or another, leaks of virus strains occurred. 11 years ago a virus of unknown origin arose in Ternopil, which caused hemorrhagic pneumonia: 450 Ukrainians died. In 2011, there was an outbreak of cholera in Ukraine – 33 people died, in 2014, 800 Ukrainians became infected with cholera. In January 2016, 20 people were hospitalised in Kharkiv. Two months later, 364 deaths were recorded in the country. In addition, the MPs found that the embassy is trying to hide information about the work in Ukraine of two centres involved in the study of pathogens dangerous to humans, which started three years ago. The creation in Ukraine of a separate laboratory for such pathogens indicates the conduct of experiments on humans. This is prohibited in the US but allowed in Ukraine – both because of the imperfect Ukrainian legislation but also because of the external governance of Ukraine by the US parties which allows turning Ukraine in a field of biological experiments. The current government in Ukraine does not want to reveal the truth, fearing the wrath of the “Washington’s Obkom”.

Disproof

In response to claims that the US control secret laboratories in Ukraine, the US Embassy in Ukraine issued a statement, which is far from the "official recognition" of what the disinformation narrative pretends. The statement reads:

"Embassy would like to set the record straight regarding disinformation spreading in some circles in Ukraine that mirrors Russian disinformation regarding the strong U.S.-Ukrainian partnership to reduce biological threats. Here in Ukraine, the U.S. Department of Defense’s Biological Threat Reduction Program works with the Ukrainian Government to consolidate and secure pathogens and toxins of security concern in Ukrainian government facilities, while allowing for peaceful research and vaccine development. We also work with our Ukrainian partners to ensure Ukraine can detect and report outbreaks caused by dangerous pathogens before they pose security or stability threats."

The statement also reminds, that Ukraine, like other post-Soviet countries, participates in US programmes aimed to reduce biological threats. Read more about the Biological Threat Reduction Program here. The statements that cholera or other viruses might have escaped from the "secret laboratories" does not have any supporting evidence. Illegal "experiments on humans" are prohibited by the Ukrainian criminal code. The legal clinical trials concern only newly invented drugs, they are carried out by pharmaceutical companies worldwide under the control of local and international inspections. The statement that Ukraine is under external control of the US is a conspiracy. Ukraine is a sovereign State since 1990 when it proclaimed independence from the USSR. Subsequently, Ukraine suffered from Russian aggression and hybrid war. It is to stress, that both media - Rossiyskaya Gazeta and TASS - do not quote any different experts which may doubt or rebuff such huge claims that the US may secretly test viruses on humans in Ukraine or hide the leaks of viruses from those labs. Only one expert, supporting the theory advanced by pro-Russian Ukrainian deputies, is quoted. Therefore, the media outlets mix up somebody's opinions and reality. See similar disinformation case about the Lugar lab in Georgia. Read more disinformation cases on Ukraine under external control and biological weapons.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 195
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 24/04/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: US, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Virus / bacteria threat, Ukrainian disintegration, Ukrainian statehood
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EU will provide Ukraine with financial support in exchange for the banking system and destruction of trade unions

[…] for its handout, the European Union not only wants to control the country’s banking system but also to strengthen the fight against corruption (read – to expand the network of grant-eaters), to reduce social payments (goodbye pensioners and the poor), to ban trade unions and to approve a Labour Code that legalises slave labour. But, of course, the adoption of the anti-Kolomoyskiy law by the Verkhovna Rada remains the key condition. Amendments to this law are currently being considered by the relevant committee [in the parliament].

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative on Ukraine and its relations with the European Union. No such demands have been made upon Ukraine. As explained by the permanent representative of Ukraine to the EU, Mykola Tochytskyi, Ukraine will receive €1.2 billion in two tranches to overcome the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. The first €600 million will be provided at once, after the approval of the decision by the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union unconditionally. The second tranche of €600 million will be provided under conditions. These conditions must be defined by the negotiations which will start soon. Therefore, the exact conditions on which this support will be granted to Ukraine have not yet been defined. Tochytskyi mentioned that, in general, such conditions may include: improvement of public finance management, labour and social security, further development of anti-corruption laws and business regulations. Moreover, Ukraine's cooperation with the IMF is another important condition. See previous disinformation narratives challenging EU-Ukraine relations and, in particular, the Association Agreement: Europe destroyed Ukraine, The EU Association Agreement destroyed the Ukrainian economy.

Under Zelenskyy, Ukraine does not advance in the implementation of the Minsk agreements

During the presidency of Volodymyr Zelenskyy, no significant progress has been achieved in resolving the conflict in Donbas. According to experts, the Ukrainian authorities are taking their time in showing commitment to the Minsk agreements. Such tactics only prolong the conflict, and without external influence on Kyiv from the West, there is little hope for its resolution.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about war in Ukraine, casting Ukraine as the sole responsible party for implementation of the Minsk agreements. At the end of April 2020, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated that the Ukrainian side in the Trilateral Contact Group offered to hold negotiations in a video format so that negotiations could continue. “At the beginning of each week, we have a Minsk video-call. We want to move forward. Because it is the only thing that brings us closer to solving this issue globally," the Ukrainian President emphasised. At the end of January 2020, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted a resolution on the status of the monitoring procedure, where Russia was named as a “party to the Minsk agreements”. The PACE resolution noted that the Russian authorities should, among other things, “fully implement the Minsk agreements to which the Russian Federation is a party and to end its military intervention in, and support for, illegally armed formations in Eastern Ukraine." Since 2014, negotiations with Russia to resolve the conflict in the Donbas have been held within the framework of the Normandy Format and the Minsk process. A special Trilateral contact group is working on a peaceful settlement of the situation in Donbas. Three parties are involved in this process: representatives of Ukraine, Russia and the OSCE. Unofficially, representatives of the "LDNR" factions are also present. The second set of measures to implement the Minsk agreements was signed on 12 February 2015. The first paragraph of the document relates to an immediate ceasefire. Next, it is necessary to withdraw heavy weapons, ensure OSCE monitoring, release prisoners, grant Donbas special status and hold local elections, provide amnesty to the parties involved in the conflict and restore control over the Ukrainian-Russian border in the conflict zone. You can read other similar cases claiming that Ukraine does not fulfill key point of Minsk agreements on negotiation with the "LDNR" or that Ukraine broke the Minsk agreements by allowing the National Police on the contact line.

Refugees from Greek camps will jeopardise Germany's health and safety

The German government is increasingly delivering the so-called refugees from Greek camps to Germany and believes that this is how the country fulfils its “humanitarian duty”. In fact, it jeopardises public health. It is likely that all of these migrants are infected with the coronavirus.

Disproof

This is a part of the recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about migrants. The Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community of Germany states that all persons seeking protection who are registered on arrival will be examined, to see whether there are any indications of coronavirus infections. This is to be done within the routine medical examinations that are already carried out, using a suitable test. The aim of this measure is to prevent infected persons from entering reception centres and endangering the health of residents and employees. If a person is found to have coronavirus, it lets the authorities make a quick decision on the necessary treatment and quarantine measures. On the 8 April, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cabinet agreed to accept 50 migrant children and youths from overcrowded camps on Greek islands. Germany’s interior ministry said it aimed to begin the transfer of unaccompanied minors, aged under 14, the following week from Greece, which has been the main gateway into the EU for people fleeing conflict in the Middle East and beyond. On arrival in Germany, the young people will be placed into quarantine for two weeks before they are divided up across Germany, the ministry said, adding that it was part of an agreement among ten other EU member states.