Russia says US preparing for ‘new pandemic’ through virus research

Russia on Wednesday claimed the US has begun preparations for a “new pandemic” by searching for virus mutations through the newly-established Office of Pandemic Preparedness and Response Policy (OPPR).

“Despite the fact that the stated goals of US programs are to monitor disease incidence and provide assistance to developing countries … we see the Pentagon conducting uncontrolled dual-use research in circumvention of international obligations,” Igor Kirillov, the head of Russia’s radiation, chemical, biological protection troops, told a briefing in Moscow.

Arguing that US military projects are primarily aimed at studying “potential agents of biological weapons,” Kirillov claimed US military-biological activity poses “a security threat to many nations around the world.”

“There is a clear trend: pathogens that fall within the Pentagon’s area of interest, such as COVID-19, avian influenza, African swine fever, subsequently become pandemic, and American pharmaceutical companies become the beneficiaries,” Kirillov said.

He added: “As in 2019, the US has begun preparing for a new pandemic by searching for virus mutations. We do not rule out that the US will use of so-called defensive technologies for offensive purposes, as well as for global governance by creating crisis situations of a biological nature.”

Kirilov claimed the office is “directly involved” in collecting dangerous pathogens in various regions of the world and the testing of unregistered drugs based on documents over the course of the Ukraine war.

The OPPR was launched on July 21 to prepare for and respond to potential pandemics, and is led by Paul Friedrichs, a military combat surgeon and retired Air Force major general who helped lead the Pentagon’s COVID response.

Scroll to Top