| 5 December 2023, Tuesday |

Putin Uses Chemical Weapons in Donbass

On 3 April, news was published about Russia’s use of the chemical substance chloropicrin – the relevant post was published in the Russian telegram channel Rusich. The previous fact of the use of this substance was recorded in September 2022 in Kherson region – then several grenades filled with chloropicrin were dropped from Russian drones on the positions of the Ukrainian armed forces. Russia using chemical weapons on the frontline is a war crime and a challenge to humanity as a whole, which has gone to great lengths to ensure that such weapons are never used again.


Russia has the necessary industrial base to produce chemical weapons. Military failures on the front are forcing Putin to look for new ways of attacking, and he is reverting to his favoured tactics of terror. The use of chloropicrin, even in small quantities, causes severe respiratory damage: it burns the eyes and nasopharynx. The Soviet army used the substance against the Mujahideen during the invasion of Afghanistan, and now Russia uses it against the Ukrainian armed forces. The chloropicrin grenade also contaminates the environment during the rupture and release of the chemical capsule during contact with the ground. Russia is committing a war crime against the Ukrainian Armed Forces and causing environmental damage.


The precedent of the use of chloropicrin by Russian armed formations is a very worrying signal. It was made public by the radical group Rusich, in its official telegram channel. But grenades with this substance could not have reached the front line without the consent of the Russian Ministry of Defence. This proves that in Russia the authorities cooperate with marginalised people and that the army is made up of numerous armed groups, private armies and mobilised criminals. This is an unprecedented threat to humanity. Russia is scaling up the risks and threats and adding to their list the production and use of chemical weapons, which are becoming uncontrollable and dependent on the will of whoever gets their hands on them. Should it be used by terrorists, the international community will be presented with new challenges, de facto conditioned by Russia.


Putin leads a terrorist state with nuclear capabilities and a reviving chemical weapons arsenal. Russia is no longer guided by international law or mere convention – Putin’s maniacal desire to invade Ukraine has already created multiple problems for humanity, and in the long term could spell disaster on a planetary scale. Neither peace nor compromise is possible with Russia – by using chemical weapons Putin shows that he intends to fight to the end. That is a good reason to isolate Russia completely, to impose comprehensive sanctions, and to recognise it in Western parliaments as a terrorist state. The process of systematically weakening Russia and destroying its army should become a joint task for the West – it is a matter of its further civilizational survival.

Source: International Foundation For Better Governance