“They start saying that there are chemical weapons that are being stored by their opponents or by the Americans, so that when they themselves deploy chemical weapons — as I fear they may — they have a fake story ready to go,” Johnson said.
“You have seen it in Syria, you saw it even in the UK. It is a cynical, barbaric government I’m afraid.”
Britain blames Putin’s secret agents for a 2018 attack in the city of Salisbury that used the nerve agent Novichok against a former Russian double agent. A British woman died weeks later.
Both Washington and Kyiv have denied the existence of laboratories intended to produce biological weapons in Ukraine, which has faced an assault by tens of thousands of Russian troops since February 24.
“Russia is inventing false pretexts in an attempt to justify its own horrific actions in Ukraine,” US State Department spokesman Ned Price said Wednesday.
The West has already accused Putin’s forces of war crimes in Ukraine including the bombing of a maternity hospital in the port of Mariupol.