Russia warns Ukraine could use ‘dirty bomb’; US denounces ‘manifestly false allegations’

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, in calls with Western defense chiefs on Sunday, warned that Ukraine was preparing to use a radioactive ‘dirty bomb’ in an alleged ‘provocation’ amid the war In progress.

US officials said the claims were “transparently false” and possibly a pretext for Russia to launch the kind of attack it was supposedly worried about.

Shoigu reportedly made the statements during calls to his counterparts in the United States, United Kingdom, France and Turkey.

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on Sunday’s call “dismissed any pretense for Russian escalation and reaffirmed the value of continued communication amid Russia’s illegal and unjustified war on the ‘Ukraine’, according to a reading out loud of the Pentagon.

US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken also spoke Sunday with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, rejecting Shoigu’s “obviously false allegations” and expressing confidence that “the world would see through any attempt by Russia to use this allegation as a pretext for escalation”, according to a call playback.

A reading out loud of the Shoigu call with British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace notes that the Russian minister “alleged that Ukraine was planning actions facilitated by Western countries, including the United Kingdom, to escalate the conflict in Ukraine “.

Wallace, like Austin, reportedly refuted the allegations and warned that Russia should not use the allegations as a “pretext for further escalation”.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday accused Russia’s defense minister of organizing a “phone carousel” to spread the allegations.

“Where Ukraine is, life is never destroyed. But wherever Russia comes, it leaves behind mass graves, torture chambers, destroyed towns and villages, mined lands, destroyed infrastructure and natural disasters,” Zelensky said in a daily speech.

“So when today the Russian Minister of Defense organizes a telephone carousel and calls the Foreign Ministers with stories about the so-called ‘dirty’ nuclear bomb, everyone understands everything well. [Everyone] understands who is the source of all that can be imagined dirty in this war.

Zelensky said Russia’s allegation “means one thing: Russia has already prepared all of this.”

Russia’s dirty bomb warning is just the latest remarks from Moscow to draw warnings of a “false flag” operation.

Russia also said Ukraine was manufacturing biological weapons with US backing, a claim that prompted warnings from the United States that Russia could use such weapons in the war.

And over the past week, Ukrainian officials and experts studying the war have warned that Russian claims that Ukraine could destroy a key dam on the Dnieper near Kherson indicate that Moscow is preparing to blow up the bridge.

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