Russian Lawmaker Proposes Declaring U.S. 'Terrorist State'

A Russian lawmaker proposed labeling the United States a "terrorist state," arguing that U.S. officials are providing Ukraine with the intelligence needed to target Russian cities.

In an interview with Russia's state-run news outlet RIA Novosti, State Duma deputy Oleg Morozov took aim at the U.S. in the wake of Sunday's explosions in the Russian city of Belgorod near the Ukraine border, which killed at least three people and damaged many homes.

The regional leader, Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov, said at least 11 apartment buildings and 39 private houses were damaged. Moscow said it was a Ukrainian missile attack, although Ukraine didn't claim responsibility for the incident.

Morozov, a member of the leading United Russia party, accused the U.S. of providing intelligence to Ukraine.

Oleg Morozo State Duma
Oleg Morozov (L) speaks to lawmakers holding a copy of the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) before the first reading vote on the treaty in the Duma, in Moscow, on December 24, 2010, with Liberal Democratic Party leader and Duma Vice-Chairman Vladimir Zhirinovsky (R) attending. Morozov has proposed labeling the United States a “terrorist state,” arguing that U.S. officials are providing Ukraine with the intelligence needed to target Russian cities. DMITRY KOSTYUKOV/AFP/Getty Images

"Now it has become obvious that this [U.S.] information is used to shell Russian cities," he told RIA Novosti.

"In fact, this is participation in the war on the side of Ukraine and aggression against Russia," Morozov continued.

"This should be openly stated on all international platforms, demand the convening of a special U.N. Security Council meeting and declare the United States a terrorist state," he urged.

Moscow has repeatedly accused Kyiv of carrying out targeted attacks on Belgorod and other regions near the Ukraine border since Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded the neighboring country on February 24.

Belgorod is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) north of the border with Ukraine.

In the aftermath of Sunday's explosions in the city, Russian defense ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said the "missile attack had been intentionally planned and was launched at the civilian population of Russian cities."

Gladkov wrote in a post on the Telegram messaging app that a 10-year-old child and a man who was hospitalized in a serious condition were among those wounded.

Russia's defense ministry claimed Ukrainian forces attacked the city with three Tochka-U missiles with cluster heads. It said its air defense destroyed all three missiles in the air, but fragments of one of them fell on residential buildings.

Newsweek couldn't independently verify the Russian reports.

Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said on May 5 that the U.S. doesn't participate in the Ukrainian military's targeting decisions.

His remarks came after U.S. officials said they shared information with Ukraine about the location of the Russian flagship warship Moskva before it sank in the Black Sea in April, The New York Times reported.

"We did not provide Ukraine with specific targeting information for the Moskva," Kirby said in a statement. "We were not involved in the Ukrainians' decision to strike the ship or in the operation they carried out. We had no prior knowledge of Ukraine's intent to target the ship. The Ukrainians have their own intelligence capabilities to track and target Russian naval vessels, as they did in this case."

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov at the time accused the U.S., Britain and other NATO members of "constantly" feeding intelligence to Ukraine.

Newsweek has contacted Russia's foreign ministry and the White House for comment.