Another anti-Russian step from Yerevan


The opening of another biolaboratory of the USA in the territory of Armenia is not accidental

Despite being a strategic partner with Russia, closely cooperating with Moscow in the military-political bloc called the Collective Security Treaty Organization and in the Eurasian Economic Union, which envisages regional economic integration, Armenia is constantly developing relations with the United States.

In particular, the year 2023 was marked by the rise of Armenia's military-political relations with the USA, NATO and the West as a whole to a higher level. For the first time in 2023, from September 11 to 19, Armenian-American joint military exercises called "Eagle Partner - 2023" were held at the "Zar" training center of the Armenian peacekeeping brigade. 85 Americans and 175 Armenian military personnel participated in the maneuvers. The exercise was observed by Brigadier General Patrick Ellis, Deputy Chief of Staff for Europe and Africa of the US Ground Forces, and Major General Gregory Anderson, Commander of the 10th Mountain Division.

Recently, another incident regarding the cooperation between Armenia and the United States in the military field has occurred. According to Hayastan's "Past" newspaper, another American biological laboratory will be opened in the country. It is noted that the issue of American biological laboratories in Armenia has always been in the focus of professional circles. In particular, various experts express concern about their potential dangers. The newspaper writes: "Representatives of the relevant structures note that the conversation started with the laboratories of the former sanitary-epidemiological stations and that they were modernized with the funding of Washington. Nikol Pashinyan assures that despite the US financial support for the modernization of biological laboratories, they are the property of the Republic of Armenia. However, these statements do not reduce the concern. And now there are reports that Defense Minister Suren Papikyan signed an agreement with the Pentagon on the opening of the 13th laboratory in Armenia last week."

The newspaper writes that, according to various sources, the new biological laboratory will be located in Gyumri, in the immediate vicinity of the Russian military base: "By the way, let's note that one of the laboratories operating in Armenia is located in Gyumri, some distance from the school. Regardless of how biolaboratories are called, experts who consider that they work with pathogens, that is, they are laboratories with biological factors, express concern about the possibility of creating, modifying or spreading various pathogens.

The Armenian media writes that the same concern is related to the spread of dangerous diseases: "By the way, against this background, many experts point out that in 2023, the total number of laboratory-confirmed measles cases in Armenia will reach 545. In 2024, 32 measles cases were confirmed and 16 people were hospitalized. Moreover, health experts say that they are worried that people are suffering from seasonal flu or gastrointestinal diseases in addition to these indicators. It is difficult to say to what extent these cases apply to biological laboratories, but experts do not exclude the possibility of conducting various experiments in populated areas."

Armenian experts say that the increase in the number of US biolaboratories located in the country stems from the pro-Western nature of Nikol Pashinyan's power. They consider it as a back blow to Armenia's ally Russia. Arman Gukasyan, an expert of the "Voice of the People" public club, said that the existence of 12 US biolaboratories in Armenia is not an ordinary issue. According to him, representatives of the Russian government have repeatedly stated that these laboratories have deep interests in the biological sphere and are a military tool in the hands of the Americans: "In 2010, the opening of biological laboratories of the United States began in Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Armenia.

The American side claims that the purpose of these institutions is to establish state-of-the-art laboratories that ensure the health of farm animals, finance renovations, and strengthen the government's ability to conduct public monitoring of possible threats to human health. But biolabs are not that simple. It is known that they have a dual function. First, the biolabs are funded by the US Department of Defense and their activities are kept top secret. This has led to the emergence of ideas that those enterprises are preparing biological weapons. The amount allocated for their financing reaches millions of US dollars. For this purpose, the Americans spent 200 million dollars in Ukraine (the number of biological laboratories in Ukraine is more than 30 units), 150 million dollars in Georgia, and 130 million dollars in Kazakhstan.

Ghukasyan drew attention to the fact that 12 biolaboratories are too many for small Armenia. He said that biolaboratories established with the financial support of the United States operate in all provinces of the republic (heylar says "marz" - S.H.). Three of them are in Yerevan: "An attempt to find out what they are doing is met with an "iron" argument: "these are closed objects of strategic importance." At the same time, "as a result of a strange coincidence", those strategically important objects are located near residential areas. For example, in Gyumru, the reference laboratory is right next to the school. We have come to the conclusion that work is being done in laboratories that are carefully hidden from the Armenian public. They are located in densely populated areas, as well as near kindergartens and playgrounds, which is completely contrary to the rules for placing such objects."

It should be noted that the Russian side has repeatedly expressed its concern about US biolaboratories located in the post-Soviet space. The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the country Sergey Lavrov said in an interview to "RT Arabic" some time ago that US-funded biolaboratories are located in Armenia, Kazakhstan and Central Asian countries, and Moscow is discussing this problem with its neighbors both bilaterally and through CSTO: "It can be said that , biosecurity cooperation memoranda with all CIS countries and other CIS countries have been signed or are about to be signed. "Memorandums envisage mutual information exchange with those countries on how biological programs are developing."

S. Lavrov noted that transparency is important so that these programs do not have a military dimension, as this is prohibited by the Convention on the Prohibition of Biological and Toxin Weapons: "These memoranda require mutual visits and familiarization with the activities of laboratories. In addition, it is written that there should be no military representatives of the third party in the biological facilities.

During the official visit of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan to Russia in 2022, a joint statement was adopted, one of the points of which was related to biosecurity. In that paragraph, it was mentioned that Armenia and Russia will not give their territories to third countries due to activities in the field of biological security that are against the interests of Moscow and Yerevan. The leaders of the two countries emphasized the importance of implementing the agreements reached between Moscow and Yerevan in the field of biological security, including the memorandum dated May 6, 2021. But now it seems that official Yerevan has decided to establish another US biolaboratory in the country, despite the agreement with Russia.

It should also be noted that recently, the reserve officers of the Armenian national security service called the union to check the activities of the biological laboratories operating in the republic. The statement also emphasized that diseases such as measles, African swine fever and anthrax have become more common in Armenia in recent years. The employees of the special services in reserve have also connected this with the activity of biolaboratories.

political scientist

- The presence of biolaboratories in Armenia, as well as their excessive number, have always been a cause for discussion among experts. In particular, the Russian side and Russian experts paid attention to the issue. Because Russia and Armenia are still military-political allies. At the same time, the 102nd military base is located on the territory of Armenia. That base is a relevant unit of the Southern Military District. The point to be emphasized is that the newly opened biolaboratory will be located in the city of Gyumri, where the Russian military base is located. This is a matter of serious concern to Russian experts. Because research on pathogens will be conducted in that biolaboratory. At the same time, the recent outbreak of measles in Hayastan also raises certain doubts about biolaboratories. It is not excluded that the role of biolaboratories in the spread of the disease is great. Against the background of the location of Armenia in our neighborhood and the emergence of the measles threat to the region and the world, the purpose of such biolaboratories should be clearly presented to the countries of the region. Because the number of biolaboratories is increasing.

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