Moscow gravely concerned over US bio-lab deployed near Russian border

Updated: 2015-06-12 11:19


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MOSCOW - Moscow is extremely concerned over the deployment of US medical-biological laboratories near the Russian border, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

"The Pentagon's activity of placing its medical-biological laboratories extremely close to Russian borders calls for grave concern," the ministry said in an online statement.

According to the statement, the US deployed "a high level biological isolation laboratory" named Richard G. Lugar Public Health Research Center in the suburbs of Georgia's capital of Tbilisi.

"The US and Georgian authorities are taking efforts to cover the true contents and intention of their activities in this military branch of the US army, which is studying especially dangerous and infectious diseases," the statement said.

"The Pentagon is trying to camouflage its military medical-biological facilities in other CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries," the statement said.

The ministry said that the relevant activities of the Pentagon, which are linked directly to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC), showed the "obvious lack of interest" of Washington in strengthening the convention.

The BTWC is a multilateral disarmament treaty prohibiting the development, production, and stockpiling of biological and toxin weapons.

Moreover, the ministry accused the US and its NATO allies of violating the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty by conducting "so-called joint nuclear missions".

As Moscow and Washington have recently been accusing each other of violating the bilateral Intermediate-Range Nuclear Force Treaty (INF), the ministry claimed that the American plans to set up missile defense bases with vertical launching systems in Romania and Poland would "directly violate the INF".

The ministry also accused the US of continuing provocations and "baseless" allegations against Moscow on its alleged intervention in the Ukraine crisis.

"The US not only fails to make any real efforts to resolve the crisis and prevent a humanitarian catastrophe in the Lugansk and Donetsk regions, but in fact spurs the current Kiev authorities to continue a fratricidal civil conflict," the statement said.