Viruses can be turned into easily concealed weapons with high epidemic powers that could contaminate food, water and animals, Iran has warned.
Gen. Gholamreza Jalali, head of Iran’s Passive Defense Organization, in a recent event discussing defensive and offensive measures for cyber-attacks and viruses, talked about the strategic importance of using viruses as weapons to contaminate an environment, according to AsrIran, a media outlet of the Islamic Republic.
“Biological viruses are extremely clever and have the capability to distinguish their environment. These viruses can only be recognized in labs,” he said, stressing that these agents are easily hidden in the environment and can cause widespread epidemics.
Jalali said that viruses, parasites, botanical poisons and animal poisons are elements that can be used in biological warfare.
“The environmental threats include humans, domesticated animals, poultry, environment, natural resources, food industry and drinking water,” he said, identifying seven ways a biological agent could strike.
The United Nations’ Biological Weapons Convention has banned the development, production and stockpiling of these threats since 1975. But based on orders from Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the country has made great progress in the field and currently several labs in Iran are working independently of each other in developing the biological elements, although the general said the effort is defensive.
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