Xinhua News Agency
March 17, 2022

U.S., NATO hold key to solving Ukraine crisis: FM spokesperson

The key to solving the Ukraine crisis is in the hands of the United States and NATO, and China hopes that the United States can truly stand on the side of peace and justice with most developing countries in the world, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said Thursday.

Spokesperson Zhao Lijian told a press conference that China has been promoting peace talks and making efforts to resolve the crisis peacefully, and will continue to play a constructive role on the issue.

He stressed that the initiators of the Ukraine crisis should carefully reflect on their role in it, earnestly assume their due responsibilities, and take practical steps to ease the situation and solve the problem, rather than blame others.

The U.S. government’s decision on NATO’s eastward expansion is directly linked to the current crisis in Ukraine, Zhao said, adding that the key to resolving the Ukraine crisis lies in the hands of the United States and NATO, and China hopes that the United States can truly stand on the side of peace and justice with most developing countries in the world to ease the situation in Ukraine.

He said China’s position on the Ukraine issue is fair and objective, and the countries that should really “feel uncomfortable” are those that think they have won the Cold War and can dominate the world, ignore the concerns of other countries and continue to advance NATO’s enlargement through five rounds of eastward expansion.

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Xinhua News Agency
March 17, 2022

Russia demands U.S. disclose information on biolabs in Ukraine

The Russian Foreign Ministry on Thursday asked Washington to provide all information on the activities of U.S.-linked biological laboratories in Ukraine.

The nervous and unjustified reaction of the United States to Moscow’s concerns only confirms “the extremely dangerous and illegal activities” carried out in these facilities, the ministry’s spokesperson Maria Zakharova told a briefing.

“We can see the stubborn silence, the reluctance to talk about the issue on international platforms, the concealment of facts, and the destruction of evidence,” she said.

Zakharova noted that these laboratories in Ukraine have worked directly “in conjunction with the Pentagon.”

Due to the absence of a verification mechanism under the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BTWC), it is impossible to monitor the degree to which these laboratories are involved with U.S. programs, she said.

Washington has been opposing a verification mechanism since 2001, the diplomat stressed.

“This suggests that the Americans are not just carrying out prohibited activities, but also blocking all possibilities for specialized international institutions to verify their prohibited activities in the field of biological weapons,” she said.

Moscow is proposing to resume work on a legally binding protocol on an effective verification mechanism within the BTWC, Zakharova said.

Last week, U.S. Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland testified before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Ukraine, admitting “Ukraine has biological research facilities.”

“We are working with the Ukrainians on how they can prevent any of those research materials from falling into the hands of Russian forces should they approach,” she said.