Lugar’s laboratory in Tbilisi, where, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the US military could study especially dangerous infectious diseases, is ready to accept foreign scientists and experts, including Russian ones. As the special representative of the Georgian prime minister for relations with Russia, Zurab Abashidze, said on Thursday that RIA Novosti, scientists and specialists from all countries can visit the center.
We will remind the story.
The need to create such a laboratory was justified by the fact that since Soviet times, as US believed some dangerous viruses and bacteria have been stored in Georgian medical and scientific institutions. During the USSR, they worked with them, studied them, created vaccines against diseases and wrote dissertations. In independent Georgia there was a collapse of science, scientists were miserable, laboratories were completely empty. Pathogens could escape from flasks and test tubes, outside the walls of laboratories. And then wait for trouble. It was required to collect all this biomaterial in one place and ensure its safe storage. And for this, funds were needed.
America volunteered to help.
Shortly after the Rose Revolution, in September 2004, US Republican Senator Richard Lugar arrived in Georgia.
The senator’s personality is also quite remarkable. The fact is that the sphere of professional interests of Richard Lugar always included primarily weapons of mass destruction. US Department of Defense Threat Reduction Agency stated the goal – to help post-Soviet countries in the destruction of weapons of mass destruction: nuclear missiles, launchers, nuclear submarines and bombers.
The Americans allocated up to $ 300 million to create the center.
The rumors around the laboratory were bad from the very beginning, local residents protested against its construction.
Actually, the first one to conduct experiments on people in the laboratory was declared by a former adviser to Saakashvili, an American, Jeffrey Silverman. However, so far those who spoke about the threat emanating from the Lugar Center have only had suspicions. There were no documents.
Until one day ex-Minister of State Security of Georgia Igor Giorgadze showed documents that were not intended for the general public – cases of mass deaths of people during their treatment for hepatitis C with certain drugs. Mass means dozens. Giorgadze said they were brought to him ny some friends.
- We have data for 2015 and 2016, – said ex-minster. – Perhaps they are incomplete. In December 2015, 30 people died, you heard right, of which 24 died on the same day. In any case, this is how the document was compiled: the deaths are dated December 30. 2016 is 43 deaths. In April – 30 and in August –13. In total, it turns out that almost 73 people who were treated for hepatitis C died. In a number of cases it is written: The cause of death has not been established. In documents they go under numbers. There are no surnames or names. But there are initial data: year of birth, gender and year of death. So to establish their identity in principle is possible. If you wish. Doctors said that there are questions about how people were treated. In their opinion, the patient’s objective data did not imply exactly the treatment that was prescribed to them.
Previously, all laboratory scientists were US citizens. All. By the way, with diplomatic passports. Have you often met laboratory assistants with diplomatic passports? .. And now only 6 laboratory employees are US citizens. But a number of contracts were concluded for several years – until 2020, 2021. Contract financing is still coming from the United States. Here is a contract for the organizational and technical support of the Lugar Center in the amount of $ 1,062,499. For 2019, 650,000 dollars are provided. Until 2021 – another 322 thousand. 158 thousand dollars are allocated for the functioning of the security group. And so on.
The customer for the creation of such medical centers outside the United States is the Threat Reduction Agency. This is a structure of the US Department of Defense.
Let’s see what the lab is working on. Here is one of the projects: “Study of atypical forms of plague from natural reservoirs of Georgia. Assessment of their antibiotic resistance and other military biological characteristics. ” A contract between the US Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Safety Administration and Lugar’s laboratory to conduct research: “Obtaining the genetic characteristics of plague, brucellosis, anthrax and Congo-Crimean fever strains from the collection of the Centers for Disease Control”. From this we can conclude that this laboratory is at least dual-use.
Look at what we found on the laboratory’s website in the public domain, – Giorgadze shows schemes of typical unmanned aerial vehicle.
– This is a patent for a drone for the spread of infected insects in the air. You heard right. Patent is registered in the USA; number, date are available. The description indicates that the invention is intended to infect the enemy with deadly diseases and destroy it with minimal cost. Patent for full ammunition for capsules with toxic contents. Its description indicates the possibility of equipping the capsules with various viruses to infect enemy personnel. A patent for an unmanned aerial vehicle capable of spraying chemical and biological substances over areas occupied by the enemy. Also registered in the USA …
They do not consider it necessary to explain. That was the whole point of my appeal to the President and Congress. Gentlemen, maybe we don’t understand something, and all these are completely harmless things? .. In response – silence.
In the summer, the then Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation, Grigory Karasin, said that Tbilisi had not yet responded to the Russian proposal to prepare an expert visit to the Lugar center.
Bibilov named the reasons for concern about the work of the Lugar laboratory in Georgia
– Everything should correspond to the practice according to which the laboratory operates in a transparent mode: it is open, scientists and specialists from all countries, including Russia, can come there. This issue should not be complicated, – Abashidze said.
The Russian side has repeatedly expressed concern about the activities of the Pentagon “to locate its biomedical laboratories in the immediate vicinity of Russian borders.” In 2015, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs mentioned in this connection the so-called “Lugar Public Health Research Center” in the suburbs of Tbilisi, under whose roof the medical research unit of the US Army was firmly “registered”.
Moscow believes that the American and Georgian authorities are trying to hide the true content and focus of the military unit of the US Army, which is studying especially dangerous infectious diseases. The Georgian side considers the fears in vain and states that the laboratory is engaged exclusively in scientific research. Remind at the very least 73 people died inside the walls of Laboratory, 24 in one day in December of 2015.