Ukraine: Russia notifies the UN about Ukraine's "dirty bomb" plan

Man walking across its destroyed house in Balakliia, Ukraine. Man walking across its destroyed house in Balakliia, Ukraine. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

25 October 2022

At the beginning of the current week, Russia sent a letter to the UN with the aim of raising the issue of a “dirty bomb” plan of Ukraine. 

Late on Monday this week, Russia delivered a letter to the UN outlining its claim over the suspecting preparation of a “dirty bomb” attack by Kyiv. According to diplomats, on the 25th of October, the Russian Federation was expected to bring up the matter at a closed-door Security Council meeting. In the letter, Russia’s U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia told U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the Security Council that “We will regard the use of the dirty bomb by the Kyiv regime as an act of nuclear terrorism”. Moreover, the Russian military ministry added that Ukraine would use a "dirty bomb" attack to assign blame on Russia for the resulting radioactive pollution. 

It is relevant to underline that his call from the Russian government was made at a time of conflict when the Ukrainian armed forces are advancing into the Kherson province, currently occupied by the Russians. About the matter, Russian accusations were deemed "transparently false" by the foreign ministers of France, Britain, and the United States, who also reaffirmed their support for Ukraine. What is more important is that this “dirty bomb” hypothetical attacks would surely have as primary target civilian infrastructures and areas. For this reason, on the western bank of the Dnipro River – where the Ukrainian Army is currently advancing -, Russia has ordered civilians to leave. Moreover, the government of Ukraine said that financing for schools and school meals had been halted, while Russian-installed authorities in Kherson were evacuating banks, administrative buildings, emergency service and medical workers. 

Overall, this still unclear move by the Russian government seems yet another pretext for escalating the conflict; however, who are currently paying the highest price are civilians in the Kherson region.

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by Alexia Tenneriello

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