Defense

Kirby: US doesn’t believe chemical attack by Russia is ‘imminent’ right now

Pentagon press secretary John Kirby
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There are currently no indications of an imminent Russian attack with chemical weapons according to Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby, but officials continue to monitor the matter closely.

“We continue to watch this very very closely. It is of the Russian playbook that that which they accuse you of, they’re planning to do now. Again, we haven’t seen anything [that] indicates some sort of imminent chemical biological attack right now, but we’re watching this very very closely,” Kirby said while appearing on ABC’s “This Week.”

Numerous international figures have warned that Russia may deploy chemical weapons in Ukraine. 

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in a German newspaper interview published on Sunday that Russia’s recent accusations against Ukraine of creating biological weapons may be a pretext for launching chemical weapons itself under a false flag operation.

“Now that these false claims have been made, we must remain vigilant because it is possible that Russia itself could plan chemical weapons operations under this fabric of lies,” Stoltenberg told German newspaper Die Welt, adding that it would be a war crime were Russia to deploy such weapons.

British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss also said last week that the U.K. was “very concerned” that Russia may use chemical weapons in Ukraine.

“We’ve seen Russia use these weapons before in fields of conflict,” Truss said, adding that it would be a “grave mistake on the part of Russia, adding to the grave mistakes that have already been made by Putin.”

Tags chemical weapons Jens Stoltenberg John Kirby John Kirby Pentagon Reactions to the 2021–2022 Russo-Ukrainian crisis Russia Russo-Ukrainian War Ukraine

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