“We are aware of social media reports which claim Russian forces deployed a potential chemical munition in Mariupol, Ukraine,” John F. Kirby, the Pentagon spokesman, said. “We cannot confirm at this time and will continue to monitor the situation closely. These reports, if true, are deeply concerning and reflective of concerns that we have had about Russia’s potential to use a variety of riot control agents, including tear gas mixed with chemical agents, in Ukraine.”
The British Defense Ministry said on Monday that prior use of phosphorous munitions by Russian forces in the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine “raises in the possibility of their future employment in Mariupol as fighting for the city intensifies.”
The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Monday night.
The Ukrainian Parliament said on Monday that it had learned of local reports from the police that Russian forces had fired on nitric acid tanks in the Donetsk region.
In his address, Mr. Zelensky called on Ukrainian allies to help supply “necessary weapons.”
“Unfortunately, we are not getting as much as we need to end this war sooner,” Mr. Zelensky said in a translation of his address shared by his office. “I am sure that we will get almost everything we need, but not only time is being lost. The lives of Ukrainians are being lost — lives that can no longer be returned.”