US President Biden accuses Putin of genocide in Ukraine
"Putin is just trying to wipe out the idea of being able to be Ukrainian."
US President Joe Biden has accused Russia's Vladimir Putin of genocide following reports of atrocities committed in Ukraine.
Biden spoke about the conflict as he boarded Air Force One in Iowa on Tuesday (12 April).
“Putin is just trying to wipe out the idea of even being able to be Ukrainian.”
US President Joe Biden said for the first time on Tuesday that Russia’s actions in Ukraine amount to “genocide”.
Read more: https://t.co/DlpP3PMOeQ pic.twitter.com/CwdRKKfKnj
— Al Jazeera English (@AJEnglish) April 13, 2022
"I called it genocide because it has become clearer and clearer that Putin is just trying to wipe out the idea of being able to be Ukrainian," Biden said.
"And the evidence is mounting.
"A bit different than it was last week, but more evidence is coming out of, literally, the horrible things the Russians have done in Ukraine.
"And we're only going to learn more and more about the devastation.
"We'll let the lawyers decide internationally whether or not that qualifies [as genocide], but it sure seems that way to me."
At a briefing on Tuesday, Press Secretary of the Department of State Ned Price said that Russia may turn to chemical weapons during the war.
The Russian Embassy in Washington described the accusations as "baseless", claiming that Russia had destroyed their chemical warfare stock in 2017.
💬@RusEmbUSA: We took note of the provocative statements made by @StateDeptSpox at a briefing on April 12 that 🇷🇺 could possibly use CW in the light of the alleged failures of the special military operation in 🇺🇦.
📎Read in full➡️https://t.co/4ICgs2HbA2
— Russian Embassy in USA 🇷🇺 (@RusEmbUSA) April 13, 2022
"We took note of the provocative statements made by Press Secretary of the U.S. Department of State Ned Price at a briefing on April 12 that our country could possibly use chemical weapons in the light of the alleged failures of the special military operation in Ukraine," the embassy said.
"Ned Price once again distinguished himself by his idle talk, not substantiated by a single piece of evidence."
Russia has previously claimed that Ukrainian forces had fabricated reports of attacks on citizens, despite evidence to suggest the contrary.
Taoiseach Micheál Martin described the claims as "preposterous", particularly in relation to reports of war crimes carried out in Bucha.
"We are increasingly hearing of accounts from independent observers in relation to the barbaric nature of this war and particularly, the indiscriminate murder of civilians," the Taoiseach said last week.
"International media and those media outlets from reputable organisations that are in Ukraine are bearing witness to this and conveying this back to us," he added.
As Russia denies responsibility for atrocities in Bucha and suggests images showing murdered civilians are fake or that the deaths occurred after Russian forces pulled out of the area, the Taoiseach says Russia's claims are "preposterous" | https://t.co/PElFqrc7vf pic.twitter.com/dOGKBiLypl
— RTÉ News (@rtenews) April 5, 2022