UN Security Council
UN Security Council Carlo Allegri/Reuters

The UN Security Council will meet on Friday at Russia’s request to discuss what Moscow claims are “the military biological activities of the US on the territory of Ukraine”, The Associated Press reported on Thursday.

The Russian request, announced in a tweet from its first deputy UN ambassador, Dmitry Polyansky, comes a day after Russia claimed that Ukraine is running chemical and biological labs with US support.

Council diplomats confirmed the meeting would convene at 10:00 a.m. EST, speaking on condition of anonymity ahead of an official announcement.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Wednesday rejected the claims from Russia as "false" and "preposterous," and warned they could serve as a pretext for the Russians to deploy chemical weapons in their assault on Ukraine.

"It’s the kind of disinformation operation we’ve seen repeatedly from the Russians over the years in Ukraine and in other countries, which have been debunked, and an example of the types of false pretexts we have been warning the Russians would invent," Psaki said.

"Also, Russia has a track record of accusing the West of the very violations that Russia itself is perpetrating. In December, Russia falsely accused the US of deploying contractors with chemical weapons in Ukraine," she continued.

Pentagon press secretary John Kirby on Wednesday called the Russian claim “a bunch of malarkey.”

Russia’s claims came hours after it bombed a maternity and children’s hospital in Mariupol, Ukraine, where over 400,000 residents are currently unable to leave.

On Thursday, US Vice President Kamala Harris called for an international war crimes investigation of Russia over its now two-week-old invasion of Ukraine.

Harris told reporters during a joint press briefing in Warsaw with Polish President Andrzej Duda that Russia’s conduct during the war should be investigated amid war crimes allegations.

“Absolutely there should be an investigation, and we should all be watching,” said Harris.