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The Biden Administration has outrageously claimed that Russia is engaged in chemical warfare in violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC). The U.S. is accusing Russia of using chloropicrin against Ukrainian troops in their trenches. Apparently, no evidence was proffered. Regardless, under the Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act of 1991 (CBW Act), “The Department of State … is re-imposing restrictions on foreign military financing, U.S. government lines of credit, and export licenses for defense articles and national security-sensitive items going to Russia,” the release says. “The Department also is sanctioning three Russian government entities associated with Russia’s chemical and biological weapons programs and four Russian companies that have contributed to such entities.”

Chloropicrin is a broad-spectrum antimicrobial, fungicide, herbicide, insecticide, and nematicide used in agriculture. It was employed as a poison gas during World War I by Germany. The U.S. accusation is based on the claim that Russia is using riot control agents as a weapon of war, which is also outlawed by the CWC. “The use of such chemicals is not an isolated incident, and is probably driven by Russian forces’ desire to dislodge Ukrainian forces from fortified positions and achieve tactical gains on the battlefield. Russia’s ongoing disregard for its obligations to the CWC comes from the same playbook as its operations to poison Aleksey Navalny and Sergei and Yulia Skripal with Novichok nerve agents,” the release claims.

Anatoly Antonov, Russia’s Ambassador to Washington, on May 1 called the new sanctions another “hodgepodge” of restrictions created by the U.S. “This is an example of the series of Russophobic actions taken by the United States in recent days,” he said in comments posted on the embassy’s Telegram channel. “Among them—a multi-billion dollar ‘package’ of assistance to Kiev, delivering dangerous long-range ammunition and promises of ephemeral security guarantees for the regime.”

“Local officials list a variety of measures among ‘no-other-option steps’ to confront Russia. Including absolutely odious and unsubstantiated accusations against the Russian Federation of using chemical weapons,” he said. “The United States is trying to intimidate our partners, including China, to block the channels of normal foreign trade cooperation. It is once again targeting Russian high-tech, transportation, and energy companies, meaning to ‘knock out’ competitors from the markets.”

Washington seems to not understand that Russia and the Russians cannot be intimidated by such decisions. Local officials do not realize that these illegitimate tricks only scare other states away. In fact, they fertilize doubts about the constructiveness of America’s current role in the world,” his statement concluded (emphasis in original).