US obliged to clarify the concerns of intl community on its military bio-labs around the world: Chinese FM
Published: Mar 16, 2022 06:03 PM
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian

The US has the obligation to abide by the Biological Weapons Convention (BWC) and clarify the concerns of the international community on its military biological labs around the world, Chinese Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday. The ministry made the comments after Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stressed the importance of establishing a verification mechanism as US-funded biological laboratories in Ukraine have caused concerns.

For a long time, the international community has had serious concerns over the US' military biological activities at home and abroad. This is not the issue of US' labs in Ukraine alone, nor is it a new issue arising from the current situation, Zhao Lijian, spokesperson of Chinese Foreign Ministry, said at Wednesday's media briefing. 

He said China welcomes the international community's joint assessment of the documents disclosed by Russia under the framework of the BWC and the UN. And at the same time, we will hear US' clarification in a fair and just manner, Zhao said.

The international community can also take this opportunity to restart the negotiation of establishing a verification mechanism of the Convention. 

"We once again urge the US to change its opposition to the establishment of a verification mechanism, and US' change will help restore the international community's confidence in US' compliance with its international obligations and improve global biosecurity," Zhao said.

For decades, the US has been constantly accusing other countries of failing to comply with their commitments and accept international inspections. The US has even resorted to sanctions against other countries over the issue. Why the US can ignore the inspection and simply say "I complied" when it comes to its own responsibility? The US can hardly be trusted by the international community based on its credibility, Zhao said.

The issue of US-funded biological laboratories in Ukraine must be addressed within the framework of the BWC, Lavrov said during a briefing on Tuesday, Xinhua News Agency reported. 

In addition to over 30 biolabs in Ukraine, the United States has created "hundreds of such laboratories" in other countries, Lavrov noted.

Global Times