Fears Russia could unleash deadly virus as Ukrainian scientists told to destroy all ‘high-threat’ diseases in labs NOW


FEARS Russia could unleash a deadly virus are mounting as Ukrainian scientists have been told to immediately destroy all “high-threat” lab diseases.

The World Health Organisation said the most deadly pathogens in Ukraine’s labs should be wiped out as Russia’s relentless bombardment of the country has raised the risk of “potential spills”.

It is feared Russia could unleash a deadly virus in Ukraine


It is feared Russia could unleash a deadly virus in UkraineCredit: Alamy
Russia's bombardment of Ukraine has increased the risk of a lab accident


Russia’s bombardment of Ukraine has increased the risk of a lab accidentCredit: AP
Russian soldiers from the airborne units advance in Ukraine


Russian soldiers from the airborne units advance in UkraineCredit: Rex

Like many other countries, Ukraine has government labs carrying out research on how to lessen the threats of dangerous diseases – such as Covid.

And the labs have received support from the US, the EU and the WHO.

The WHO said it has collaborated with Ukrainian labs for several years to promote security practices that help prevent “accidental or deliberate release of pathogens”.

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And it has now advised researchers in Ukraine to destroy all “high-threat” pathogens to avoid a disastrous accident.

The WHO said: “As part of this work, WHO has strongly recommended to the Ministry of Health in Ukraine and other responsible bodies to destroy high-threat pathogens to prevent any potential spills.”

The UN agency didn’t provide specific information about the pathogens or toxins housed in Ukraine’s labs.

The country’s labs have been at the centre of a raging information war since Russia stormed Ukraine two weeks ago.

Earlier this week, Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova repeated a longstanding claim that the US runs a biowarfare lab in Ukraine – an accusation denied by Washington and Kyiv.

Zakharova claimed documents unearthed by Russian forces in Ukraine showed “an emergency attempt to erase evidence of military biological programmes” by destroying lab samples.

A Ukrainian presidential spokesperson said: “Ukraine strictly denies any such allegation.”

And the US government also strongly denied Zakharova’s accusations – and warned Russia might use its claims as a pretext to deploy its own chemical or biological weapons.

The WHO said it encourages all parties to cooperate in “the safe and secure disposal of any pathogens they come across, and to reach out for technical assistance as needed”.

The White House has already warned desperate Vladimir Putin could unleash biological and chemical weapons on Ukraine.

US intelligence chiefs fear Putin may attempt to “create a false flag operation” with its devastating weapons so he can blame Kyiv.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said: “We should all be on the lookout for Russia to possibly use chemical or biological weapons in Ukraine, or to create a false flag operation using them.

“It’s a clear pattern.”


She added: “Russia has long maintained a biological weapons program in violation of international law.

“This is all an obvious ploy by Russia to try to justify its further premeditated, unprovoked, and unjustified attack on Ukraine.

“Also, Russia has a track record of accusing the West of the very violations that Russia itself is perpetrating.”

The Kremlin is pumping out torrents of misinformation in a bid to defend its invasion and the bombing of civilians.

The war has now been going on for two weeks – and shows no sign in stopping despite peace talks.

And Mariupol has felt the brunt of Putin’s war machine.

It is estimated some 1,200 civilians have been killed in the city – which is the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine.

Pictures show the city ablaze, blood on the streets, dead bodies lying where they dropped, as the Red Cross described the situation as “apocalyptic”.

The population of 200,000 have been subject to constant bombardment as the city was encircled by the Russian forces.

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It has become a humanitarian catastrophe where people are living in their basements, having to melt snow for water, and where unburied bodies are ripped apart by stray dogs.

United Nations officials have warned the refugees desperately trying to flee from Ukraine will have increased to four million.


A Ukrainian serviceman takes a photograph of a damaged church after shelling in Mariupol


A Ukrainian serviceman takes a photograph of a damaged church after shelling in MariupolCredit: AP
Members of Ukrainian emergency services stand amid rubble in Chernihiv


Members of Ukrainian emergency services stand amid rubble in ChernihivCredit: Reuters


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