Deliberately covering up doping. The West’s secret plan to dismantle Russia. And finally: The West excluding the Russian candidate from the Eurovision song contest to humiliate Russia.

Accusations of concealment and whitewashing are one of the core techniques of the pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign. What makes it a convenient method is the possibility to influence the public debate and channel criticism toward the opponent – but not have the responsibility to show the evidence to back up the claims.

This week, we saw two disinformation tools combined: hacking and accusations that Western authorities are hiding problems. Hackers from Fancy Bears published documents of the Swedish Sports Confederation (RF) and claimed the Swedish sports functionaries had been hiding positive doping tests.

The story was quickly picked up by Russian state-funded Sputnik, Russia Today and dozens of Russian-language websites.

The Swedish Sports Confederation stated that, in fact, nothing suggests that the athletes had been involved in doping, reported the hack to the police and appealed to the media and the public not to help spread the sensitive personal details of the athletes.

The activities of Fancy Bears feed into Russia’s year-long campaign to discredit international anti-doping organisations after systemic manipulation of anti-doping rules in Russia during the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi was revealed.

In the incident when they attacked the World Anti-Doping Agency WADA, the documents hackers published included fake data. Western governments and security experts link Fancy Bear, also known as APT28, to a Russian intelligence agency for the attack on the Democratic National Committee ahead of the 2016 U.S. elections.

Dutch-led investigation on MH17 targeted again

Disguised as “criticism” and “alternative views”, familiar tactics were repeatedly used in various other disinforming messages during the past week. One targeted – again – the Dutch-led international investigation into the MH17 tragedy and announced that its conclusions are “against the laws of physics”, and introduced one more distorted version of shooting down the passenger plane in July 2014: that it must have been an explosion inside the plane. In fact international consensus is that it was a BUK missile, transported from Russia, that killed the 298 civilians on board.

In other reports, we learned that Finland has joined NATO on the quiet (neither the NATO nor Finnish leadership, for their part, seem to be aware of this development).

And the Canadian foreign minister was again falsely accused of lying about the Nazi past of her grandfather.

The major disinformation campaign around the Salibury attack also continued. This time, the British government was not just accused of covering up the truth, but of  “kidnapping” poisoned Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. In fact Yulia Skripal has said that she did not wish to take up the offer of assistance from the Russian embassy in London. According to the UK, the poisoning was either a direct action by the Russian state against the UK, or the Russian government lost control of its nerve agent and allowed it to get into the hands of others.

Yulia and Sergey Skripal were kidnapped by the British government
Additional details: The Russian consulate staff in the UK wanted to talk to Yulia and Sergey Skripal, but they were not allowed. It looks as the British government has kidnapped both. They isolate them from the world deliberately.
Language / Targeted audience: Czech
Link to the disinformation: http://www.vlasteneckenoviny.cz/?p=199173
Disinforming outlet(s): vlasteneckenoviny.cz
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Russian citizen Yulia Skripal has said that she did not wish to take up the offer of assistance from the Russian embassy in London. http://news.met.police.uk/news/statement-issued-on-behalf-of-yulia-skripal-302508

For background:

Many competing and contradictory stories promulgated by Russian state-controlled media on the Skripal poisoning https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=sergei+skripal&disinfo_issue=&date=

On Sunday 4 March Sergei and Yulia Skripal were poisoned in Salisbury with a military-grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia.

For the UK response see: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/novichok-nerve-agent-use-in-salisbury-uk-government-response

The OPCW have confirmed the UK findings in the case. "The results of the analysis by the OPCW designated laboratories of environmental and biomedical samples collected by the OPCW team confirm the findings of the United Kingdom relating to the identity of the toxic chemical that was used in Salisbury and severely injured three people." https://www.opcw.org/news/article/opcw-issues-report-on-technical-assistance-requested-by-the-united-kingdom/

Keywords: Sergei Skripal
Countries: UK, Russia
More
Novichok was produced in the Czech Republic
Additional details: In November 2017 a small amount of novichok for scientific purposes was produced in the Czech Republic. It proves that London has poisoned Skripal in order to blame Russia for it.
Language / Targeted audience: Czech
Disinforming outlet(s): ac24.cz
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

"There has never been any novichok substance ever produced, developed or stored in the Czech Republic. This was stated by both intelligence services in their reports", the Office of the Government said in a statement. https://www.irozhlas.cz/zpravy-domov/babis-novicok-se-v-cesku-nevyrabel-shodly-se-na-tom-bis-i-vojenske-zpravodajstvi_1805071205_kno, http://www.ceskatelevize.cz/ct24/domaci/2471815-novicok-se-v-cesku-nevyrabel-ani-neskladoval-ujistily-tajne-sluzby-babise

For background on the disinformation surrounding the Skripal case, see our previous reporting; https://euvsdisinfo.eu/?s=Skripal, https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=Skripal&disinfo_issue=&date=

Keywords: Sergei Skripal, Chemical weapons/attack
Countries: Czech Republic, UK, Russia
More
USSR had no allies before WWII, but it won the war nevertheless
Additional details: In principle, what is happening today is very similar to what happened before the Second World War. There are a lot of analogies here. I must say that in fact the USSR was in a much worse situation than Russia is today. It had no allies at all. [---] So, in principle, the chances of the USSR were very small. But today, on the eve of May 9 [the official holiday in Russia – The Victory Day of World War II], I will remind you with what this [the war of the USSR against Nazi Germany 1941-1945] ended.

        
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p9xX39lsBt8
Disinforming outlet(s): Voskresnyi vecher c Vladimirom Solovievym @Rossia 1, 1:10:01
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

During WWII, Moscow had a lot of allies united by the ant-Hitler coalition including the US and UK. It was fighting not the West but the Nazi Germany and other Axis powers. https://www.britannica.com/event/World-War-II

Also, a non-aggression pact between Germany and the Soviet Union was concluded only a few days before the beginning of World War II and divided eastern Europe into German and Soviet spheres of influence. https://www.britannica.com/event/German-Soviet-Nonaggression-Pact

Keywords: WWIII
Countries: USSR, Russia
More
The Western countries did not let Yulia Samoylova into the Eurovision finals in order to humiliate Russia
Additional details: The decision on the first three places [in the Eurovision song contest] is taken by a very narrow circle of countries that mark the winners. Therefore- in order to humiliate Russia once again - Yulia Samoylova was not let to join the finals.

   
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G_RQTb_dbTU
Disinforming outlet(s): Vremya pokazhet @Pervyi kanal, 6:15
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Conspiracy theory, no evidence given. Julia Samoylova ranked 15th in the second semi-finals because she got only 65 points. https://eurovision.tv/event/lisbon-2018/second-semi-final/participants

Viewers at home and professional juries each determine the outcome of the two Semi-Finals of the Eurovision Song Contest. In each Semi-Final, 10 contestants qualify for the Grand Final.https://eurovision.tv/about/voting/

Other examples of disinformation around the Eurovision: https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=eurovision&disinfo_issue=&date=

Keywords: Eurovision
Countries: Russia
More
Crimea is Russian
Additional details: Crimea is seen as part of Russia, from which it thus cannot legally secede. Crimea ended up being included in the Ukrainian SSR only based on the "voluntary decision" by Nikita Khrushchev. Up to this point, it (Crimea) had been perceived exclusively as a Russian territory. And in 2014 the peninsula joined the Russian Federation on the basis of a referendum in which the overwhelming majority of the inhabitants of the peninsula took part. And now it will not be returned to Ukraine or any other country.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): RT
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Crimea is part of Ukraine. In 1783 Catherine II (the Great) annexed Crimean peninsula. After that, rivalry between the Russians and the Turks persisted, and in the Crimean War (1853–56) it expanded into a broader European conflict.

When the Revolution of 1917 led to the collapse of the Russian Empire, the remaining Crimean Tatars declared Crimea to be an independent democratic republic. The peninsula was reorganized as the Crimean Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in 1921. After the war Crimea was downgraded from an autonomous republic to an oblast (region) of the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic, and in 1954 it was transferred to Ukraine. https://www.britannica.com/place/Crimea

Russia illegally annexed Crimea in 2014. https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/41530/international-law-crimea-ukraine_en

Further debunking by Polygraph.info

Keywords: International Law, Crimea
Countries: Russia, Ukraine
More
US suspended funding of White Helmets in Syria because they were lying about the Douma attack
Additional details: US officials refused to personally talk to witnesses of the alleged chemical attack in Douma when they were giving testimony in Hague, because it turned out that the US stopped funding White helmets. US suspended to finance them, because they were lying about the Douma attack.
Language / Targeted audience: Czech
Disinforming outlet(s): ac24.cz
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

The announced freeze of funding for Syria (including the White Helmets) was announced before the Douma attack https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/30/world/middleeast/syria-us-coalition-deaths.html.

For background on disinformation targeting the White Helmets and the chemical attack in Douma, see our previous reporting https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=White+Helmets&disinfo_issue=&date=, https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=Douma&disinfo_issue=&date=, https://euvsdisinfo.eu/?s=white+helmets

Keywords: Douma, White Helmets, Chemical weapons/attack, Syrian War
Countries: US, Syria
More
The European Commission wants to certify "true" information
Additional details: The European Commission has announced that it will fight disinformation. In practice, it means censoring and telling what is true and what is not. The largest Czech political group on Facebook has already been suspended because someone has reported that it has been promoting hatred for certain groups of people.
Language / Targeted audience: Czech
Disinforming outlet(s): https://aeronet.cz
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

In its Communication, the European Commission proposed an EU-wide Code of Practice on Disinformation. The code will aim to achieve 5 goals. One of these aims is literally "Making it easier for users to discover and access different news sources representing alternative viewpoints". For the Facebook group referred to (which allegedly was suspended), it is clear that it still exists and with 3789 members it is not the biggest Facebook on the Czech Facebook.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/344917118941679/?ref=group_header, http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-18-3370_en.htm

Keywords: fake news, European Commission, Censorship
Countries: Czech Republic, EU
More
Ukrainian people has been brainwashed and should be denazified
Additional details: Ukrainian people have been brainwashed just like the Germans used to be. The should be denazified.


           
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUY_jzl8u08
Disinforming outlet(s): Vremya pokazhet @Pervyi kanal, 14:19
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation of Ukraine and Nazis https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=ukraine&disinfo_issue=&disinfo_keywords%5B%5D=77101&date=

As witnessed by the democratic Early Parliament elections held on 26 October 2014, Ukraine is governed by a democratically elected Parliament. The far-right ‘Right Sector’ [often depicted as "fascists" or "Nazis" by pro-Kremlin outlets] gained only 1.8% of the votes, far short of the threshold needed to enter parliament. Ukraine's electorate clearly voted for unity and moderation, not separatism or extremism, and the composition of the parliament reflects that http://bit.ly/2dFFEdi

Keywords: Ukraine, Nazi/Fascist
Countries: Russia, Ukraine, Germany
More
Moscow does not conduct a war with Ukraine // The internal political crisis in Ukraine was inspired by the West
Additional details: First of all, I would like to draw attention to the fundamental point for understanding the current situation: Russia does not conduct any war with Ukraine. The war against their own people was unleashed by nationalists, who came to power in February 2014 because of the coup d'etat, who do not accept dissent and want to impose their own "order" with the help of force. There is a war between Kyiv and the Ukrainian regions. The internal political crisis in Ukraine was inspired from the outside by a group of Western states led by the United States, who consider the entire world to be a sphere of their influence, aimed at exclusiveness, dividing the nations into "ours" and "the others".


 

 
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://ria.ru/world/20180503/1519792683.html
Disinforming outlet(s): Ria.ru, rg.ru, life.ru, Sputnik and others
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the war in Ukraine. https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=civil+war&disinfo_issue=&date=

There was no coup in Ukraine four years ago. The demonstrations which began in Kyiv in November 2013 – called "Maidan", or "Euromaidan" – were not provoked from outside but were a result of the Ukrainian people's frustration with former President Yanukovych's last minute U-turn when, after seven years of negotiation, he refused to sign the EU–Ukraine Association Agreement and halted progress towards Ukraine's closer relationship with the EU as a result of Russian pressure. The protesters' demands included constitutional reform, a stronger role for parliament, formation of a government of national unity, an end to corruption, early presidential elections and an end to violence http://bit.ly/2ftv6iT. The European Union does not recognise the illegal annexation of Crimea and continues to condemn this violation of international law, and that Russia’s illegal actions remain a direct challenge to international security, with grave implications for the international legal order that protects the unity and sovereignty of all States.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has stated that “the information available suggests that the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol amounts to an international armed conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. This international armed conflict began at the latest on 26 February when the Russian Federation deployed members of its armed forces to gain control over parts of the Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian Government https://www.icc-cpi.int/iccdocs/otp/161114-otp-rep-PE_ENG.pdf

For further debunking see https://euvsdisinfo.eu/report/the-osce-the-pentagon-nato-headquarters-and-the-council-of-europe-do-not-recognize-the-facts-of-russias-aggression-against-ukraine-primarily-the-intrusion-of-russian-tanks-and-paratroopers-into-do/ and https://euvsdisinfo.eu/report/the-nazis-have-seized-power-in-ukraine/

Keywords: Civil war, War in Ukraine, Coup, Euromaidan
Countries: Russia, The West, Ukraine, US
More
Ukraine has lost its independence
Additional details: For many years, there has been an attempt to force a false choice "with us or against us” on Kyiv, between the development of cooperation in the East or in the West, which ultimately led to the collapse of the Ukrainian statehood that had never been strong. The result for today is the de facto loss of independence, the suffering of people, the collapse of the country's economy, which had all the opportunities to become one of the most stable and economically strong in Europe.

 
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUY_jzl8u08
Disinforming outlet(s): Vremya pokazhet @Pervyi kanal, 16:45
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about Ukraine's statehood https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=&disinfo_issue=&disinfo_keywords%5B%5D=77158&date=

It was Russia, not the West, who annexed Crimea and waged the war in Donbas in 2014. As for the West, it has never forced Kyiv to make so-called “false choice between Russia and Europe”.

The demonstrations which began in Kyiv in November 2013 – called "Maidan", or "Euromaidan" – were not provoked from outside but were a result of the Ukrainian people's frustration with former President Yanukovych's last minute U-turn when, after seven years of negotiation, he refused to sign the EU–Ukraine Association Agreement and halted progress towards Ukraine's closer relationship with the EU as a result of Russian pressure. The protesters' demands included constitutional reform, a stronger role for parliament, formation of a government of national unity, an end to corruption, early presidential elections and an end to violence http://bit.ly/2ftv6iT. The European Union does not recognise the illegal annexation of Crimea and continues to condemn this violation of international law, and that Russia’s illegal actions remain a direct challenge to international security, with grave implications for the international legal order that protects the unity and sovereignty of all States.

Keywords: The West, Crimea, Ukrainian statehood
Countries: Europe, The West, Ukraine
More
The West has just one goal in its relations with Russia: dismantling Russia
Additional details: There is a global political goal of West in relation to Russia, namely, the dismantling of the present-day Russian Federation. Dismantling of its regime, this social system.

 

       
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yPrhgW1mt9w
Disinforming outlet(s): Vremya pokazhet @Pervyi kanal, 39:33
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the Western aggression toward Russia. https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=&disinfo_issue=&disinfo_keywords%5B%5D=77319&date=

  • There is in fact a clear record of strong cooperation between the EU and Russia, dating back to 1994, when the two sides negotiated a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement. Russia was identified as a strategic partner for the EU, and was the only country with which the EU held summits not once, but twice a year. A new EU-Russia agreement was being negotiated up until 2014, at which point talks were unfortunately suspended due to Russia's involvement in the Ukraine conflict. Negotiations were also in train on visa facilitation. There was also cooperation between the EU and Russia on a number of foreign policy issues, some of which continues to this day. The EU and its Member States have maintained a clear policy of reaching out to Russian society and youth, mainly through the Erasmus+ student exchange programme and other people to people contacts.
  • NATO has consistently worked hard to build a cooperative relationship with Russia since the early 1990s, through the Partnership for Peace and creation of a NATO-Russia Council, and specific cooperation in the Western Balkans on and issues like counter-narcotics and counter-terrorism. In fact, as NATO points out, no other NATO partner has been offered a comparable relationship, nor a similarly comprehensive institutional framework: http://bit.ly/2e0TZnG.
  • In 1997, Russia was invited to join the G7 group of major advanced economies in the world, thus forming the G8. (At the time, Russia ranked 14th to 17th in the list of countries according to GDP: http://bit.ly/2dWb51l; http://bit.ly/2ejhOpw; http://bit.ly/2dqu4jQ). In 2006, President Putin hosted the G8 summit in Saint Petersburg. Russia's membership of the G8 was suspended in 2014 because of its illegal annexation of Crimea.
  • Russia joined the Council of Europe, the continent's leading human rights organisation, in 1996.

For more on EU-Russia relations see https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/35939/european-union-and-russian-federation_en

For more on NATO-Russia relations see https://www.nato.int/cps/en/natolive/topics_50090.htm

Keywords: Anti-Russian, Destabilising Russia
Countries: Russia, The West
More
US freezes funding for White Helmets due to their role in the chemical attack in Douma
Additional details: Witnesses confirmed that the White Helmets organised the Douma chemical attacks, and then the US froze funding to the White Helmets. In fact,  witnesses gave their testimony at the Hague confirming that there was no chemical attack. The White Helmets supported terrorist groups on numerous occasions, which also played a role in the US freezing funding for them.
Language / Targeted audience: Hungarian
Disinforming outlet(s): Ujvilagtudat.blogspot.hu
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

The announced freeze of funding for Syria (including the White Helmets) was announced before the Douma attack https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/30/world/middleeast/syria-us-coalition-deaths.html.

For background on disinformation targeting the White Helmets and the chemical attack in Douma, see our previous reporting https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=White+Helmets&disinfo_issue=&date=, https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=Douma&disinfo_issue=&date=, https://euvsdisinfo.eu/?s=white+helmets

 

Keywords: Douma, White Helmets, Chemical weapons/attack, Syrian War
Countries: US, Syria
More
US sanctions seriously damage US businesses
Additional details: U.S. sanctions against companies owned by Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska (who is also personally a target of the U.S. sanctions) would seriously damage American businesses. Sanctioning Deripaska’s company Rusal, the world’s second-largest aluminum producer, would hurt companies like the Ford Motor Company. The company would not have enough aluminum to supply the market demand for the popular Ford F150 pickup truck.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): RIA Novosti
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring disinformation concerning sanctions against Russia. Ford does not depend on Rusal or any other foreign source of aluminium to produce these trucks. “F150 is only produced in the U.S.,” according to Christin Baker, a Ford Company spokesperson. “95 percent of the steel and 98 percent of the aluminium used in U.S. production is sourced in US.” Further debunking by Polygraph.info

Keywords: Sanctions
Countries: Russia, US
More
Naftogaz loses to Gazprom in EU Court
Additional details: The Ukrainian company Naftogaz lost a law suit against the Russian company Gazprom in EU court.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): Ukraina.ru
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Actually, Naftogaz did not file a suit against Gazprom but rather against an October 2016 European Commission decision allowing Gazprom to increase its use of the German Opal gas pipeline. This decision allowed Moscow to expand its Nord Stream pipeline and bypass Ukraine when supplying gas to Europe. Furthermore, the matter never actually became a lawsuit, as the European Court of Justice ruled to “dismiss the action as inadmissible”.

Naftogaz confirms that the issue is not about Naftogaz losing to Gazprom at all, but rather about the Court concluding that the EU decision on the Opal pipeline was not final and was to be implemented on a national level (i.e. in Germany) and was therefore not subject to be challenged in the European court.

Further debunking at Stopfake.org

Keywords: EU, Energy
Countries: Russia, Ukraine, EU
More
The US made Finland to conduct anti-Russian military exercise
Additional details: The US made Finland to conduct anti-Russian military exercise.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://utro.ru/army/2018/05/07/1359909.shtml
Disinforming outlet(s): Utro.ru
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation around military exercises and US dictating European countries. https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=&disinfo_issue=&disinfo_keywords%5B%5D=77413&date=

The Finnish Army’s mechanised exercise Arrow 18 is conducted in Pohjankangas, Niinisalo, from 7 to 18 May 2018. Apart from the participating Finnish training units, this exercise will bring to Finland the US Army Europe (USAREUR) 2nd Cavalry Regiment’s mechanised infantry, an armoured fighting vehicle combat team from the Marine Corps Forces Europe and Africa (MARFOREUR/AF), and an intelligence platoon from the Norwegian Armed Forces. http://maavoimat.fi/en/arrow18-en

Further debunking by Ilta-Sanomat: https://www.is.fi/ulkomaat/art-2000005673160.html

Keywords: Anti-Russian, Military exercise
Countries: Russia, US, Finland
More
Georgian Legion fighter takes the side of Donetsk People’s Republic
Additional details: A Georgian citizen was arrested near the dividing line, who was recruited by the Georgian Legion and who was ready to take the side of separatists. The arrested man cited the persecution of those Georgian fighters who took part in the 2014 Maidan developments as the reason behind his decision.
Language / Targeted audience: Georgian
Disinforming outlet(s): Saqinform.ge
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Keywords: Donetsk, Euromaidan, Foreign mercenaries
Countries: Ukraine, Georgia
More
Rumours that Finland is already officially in Nato, it is a secret agreement
Additional details: There are rumours that Finland is already officially in Nato and that it is a secret agreement.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): 5 kanal
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Conspiracy theory. Finland is not in NATO. Cooperation has been reinforced over the years since Finland joined NATO’s Partnership for Peace in 1994 and became a member of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council in 1997. https://www.nato.int/cps/ic/natohq/topics_49594.htm#

Keywords: EU/NATO enlargement, NATO
Countries: Finland
More
Sweden is hiding positive doping tests of two athletes
Additional details: The hacker group Fancy Bears published a number of documents of The Swedish Sports Confederation (RF), that shows the sports functionaries hid positive doping tests of one skier and one track and field athlete.

The materials note that the two athletes have at various times given positive doping tests, which showed the presence of a prohibited preparation terbutaline (analogue of salbutamol, which is prescribed for the treatment of bronchial asthma and bronchitis - Ed.), But no athletes have been investigated or sanctioned .


It is also reported that, according to information from the documents, the vast majority of skiers and biathletes from Sweden use therapeutic exceptions, since they suffer from a chronic inflammatory disease of the respiratory tract.

According to hackers, representatives from The Swedish Sports Confederation launched an attack on Norwegian skiers, giving out news of tens of thousands of doses of salbutamol, which the Norwegian team took with them to the 2018 Olympic Games in Pyeongchang in order to take the blow from Swedish sport,
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): RIA Novosti
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

No evidence given. The Confederation said the attack was aimed at discrediting its anti-doping activities. "We have nothing to hide and the goal of the sports movement's anti-doping efforts is to ensure all athletes' right to participate and compete in an environment free from doping. The most serious thing about this intrusion is that personal data such as those of the active athletes is spread by hackers" said Stefan Bergh, Secretary General of The Swedish Sports Confederation. The Confederation also appealed to the media and the public not to help spread the sensitive personal details of the active athletes that had been hacked - denying that any of the details suggests that they have been involved in doping.

The Swedish Sports Confederation has reported the hack to the police and reported the infringement to the Data Inspectorate.

It said the attack was by the Fancy Bears hacking group, also known as APT28, which Western governments and security experts have linked to a Russian intelligence agency and have blamed it for operations including an attack on the Democratic National Committee ahead of the 2016 U.S. elections.

Earlier, Fancy Bears has also illegally obtained data from an account in WADA’s Anti-Doping Administration and Management System (ADAMS) created especially for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.  Not all data released by Fancy Bear accurately reflected original ADAMS data. https://www.wada-ama.org/en/media/news/2016-10/cyber-security-update-wadas-incident-response For more on alteration of breached data see https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2016/10/researchers-find-fake-data-in-olympic-anti-doping-guccifer-2-0-clinton-dumps/

Keywords: Fancy Bear, Doping, WADA
Countries: Russia, Sweden
More
Hackers Expose Doping Use in Sweden
Additional details:


A hacktivist collective that previously exposed US athletes using banned substances with WADA’s blessing has now set its sights on a Swedish sports organization which allegedly tried to cover up doping use in its home country.




The Fancy Bears hacker group has published a number of documents obtained from the Swedish Sports Confederation (RF) which allegedly confirm that the organization which, among other things, is responsible for anti-doping control in Sweden has effectively turned a blind eye on doping use at least on several occasions.

The documents which were published on the group’s website show that at least two Swedish athletes were caught using terbutaline – a drug which is used to treat asthma symptoms and which also helps boost an athlete’s performance.However, even though the athletes’ infraction was exposed, apparently neither of them was penalized for it, the hackers point out.

Language / Targeted audience: English
Disinforming outlet(s): Sputnik
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

No evidence given. The Confederation said the attack was aimed at discrediting its anti-doping activities. "We have nothing to hide and the goal of the sports movement's anti-doping efforts is to ensure all athletes' right to participate and compete in an environment free from doping. The most serious thing about this intrusion is that personal data such as those of the active athletes is spread by hackers" said Stefan Bergh, Secretary General of The Swedish Sports Confederation. The Confederation also appealed to the media and the public not to help spread the sensitive personal details of the active athletes that had been hacked - denying that any of the details suggests that they have been involved in doping.

The Swedish Sports Confederation has reported the hack to the police and reported the infringement to the Data Inspectorate.

It said the attack was by the Fancy Bears hacking group, also known as APT28, which Western governments and security experts have linked to a Russian intelligence agency and have blamed it for operations including an attack on the Democratic National Committee ahead of the 2016 U.S. elections.

Earlier, Fancy Bears has also illegally obtained data from an account in WADA’s Anti-Doping Administration and Management System (ADAMS) created especially for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.  Not all data released by Fancy Bear accurately reflected original ADAMS data. https://www.wada-ama.org/en/media/news/2016-10/cyber-security-update-wadas-incident-response For more on alteration of breached data see https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2016/10/researchers-find-fake-data-in-olympic-anti-doping-guccifer-2-0-clinton-dumps/

Keywords: Fancy Bear, Doping, WADA
Countries: Russia, Sweden
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Foreign Minister of Canada lied about her grandfather's Nazi past and connections with Auschwitz
Additional details: Foreign Minister of Canada Chrystia Freeland tried to hide and lied about her grandfather's Nazi past and connections with Auschwitz.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): Pervyi Kanal
Reported by: https://www.1tv.ru/news/2018-05-10/345295-ministr_inostrannyh_del_kanady_pytalas_skryt_chto_ee_ded_byl_natsistom_i_svyazan_s_kontslagerem_aushvits
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation. No evidence given that Chrystia Freeland would have lied.

Ms. Freeland's uncle, John-Paul Himka has studied family history and told to the Globe and Mail in 2017:

"He was the editor of a legal newspaper in Nazi-occupied Poland. He never signed anything in the paper. He never made policy or that kind of thing. It wouldn't be his call. [The newspaper] also performed a function for Ukrainian culture and kept Ukrainian intelligentsia alive during the war by paying them for articles, not just anti-Semitic articles but articles about Ukrainian culture. It was a bit of a mixed bag."

Himka does not mention that Ms. Freeland's grandfather would have had any connections with Auschwitz.

Ms. Freeland's office offered a short statement to the Globe and Mail when asked for comment on Prof. Himka's writings about Krakivski Visti and her grandfather.

"Dating back many years, the Minister has supported her uncle's efforts to study and publish on this difficult chapter in her late grandfather's past."

For further debunking see the Insider: https://theins.ru/antifake/102415

Keywords: Nazi/Fascist
Countries: Canada
More
73% of Sweden's population believes that integration of migrants is unsuccessful
Additional details: According to a poll conducted by the European Commission, 55% of the EU population think that the process of integration of the majority of migrants in the country is unsuccessful.

For example, 73% of Sweden's population believes that integration of migrants is unsuccessful, in France - 64% and in Germany - 63%.
Language / Targeted audience: English
Disinforming outlet(s): Breitbart
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

According to the Eurobarometer, 54% of the respondents believe that the process of integrating migrants in their countries is successful, with 40% considering it unsuccessful and 6% having answered “I do not know”. In the case of Sweden, 52% respondents answered that integration was not successful and 46% said it was successful. The indicator equals to 46% for France, while according to Breitbart's version, it is 64%. In Germany, 48% of the respondents consider the process to be unsuccessful, which is 15% less than Breitbart's version.

Migration is  a commonly exploited issue in pro-Kremlin disinformation. Further debunking by Myth Detector

Keywords: EU, Migration crisis
Countries: Germany, Sweden, France
More
US bans 155 Ukrainian imports due to political situation
Additional details: the US suspended duty free import of 155 types of Ukrainian products due to the political situation in the country.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): RT
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Actually, the decision on the part of the US was made last year and has nothing to do with the current political situation in Ukraine. In December 2017 the US administration put Ukraine on notice for “failing to provide adequate and effective protection of intellectual property rights, providing 120 days to remedy the situation and improve the legal regime governing royalties.

As the 120 days’ notice expired and the copyright situation in Ukraine remained unchanged, Ukraine’s partial suspension from the Generalized System of Preferences for 155 types of Ukrainian products went into effect in April 26, 2018. In a special 2018 report on intellectual property rights issued by the Office of the US Trade Representative, Ukraine continues to be on the US priority watch list for copyright infringement together with China, Russia, Argentina and eight other countries.

Further debunking at Stopfake.org

Keywords: Trade, Ukrainian disintegration
Countries: Ukraine, US
More
University of Turin recognizes Donetsk People’s Republic diplomas
Additional details: The University of Turin recognizes certificates from the universities of the Donetsk People’s Republic
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): torinoggi.it
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

In fact, Turin University’s Department of Economics accepted a student from Makyivka in the occupied Donbas territories for its Master of Economy program. The young woman, born in 1991, had Bachelor and Master degrees diplomas issued by the Donetsk National University well before the Russian occupation of the region in January 2014. The diplomas in question were issued by a Ukrainian university.

Since the occupation of Donetsk, Donetsk State University had moved its campus to central Ukraine and continues to teach students in temporary facilities in the city of Vinnytsia.

Further debunking at Stopfake.org

Keywords: Donetsk
Countries: Italy, Ukraine
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The end of visa-free regime for Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova
Additional details: It will become more difficult for the citizens of Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova to travel to Europe. In practise, the visa-free regime for Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova will end.
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Disinforming outlet(s): Vesti 24
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on visa-free regime and ETIAS. https://euvsdisinfo.eu/report/shocking-news-eu-is-preparing-new-visas-for-serbians-this-is-the-end-of-integrations/

The European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) is not a visa. A visa free traveller does obviously not need a visa to enter the Schengen area, and ETIAS will not change this. ETIAS will be an automated IT system created to identify any risks associated with a visa-exempt visitor travelling to the Schengen Area. This concerns citizens of all visa free countries, currently over 60 countries including the US and Canada.

ETIAS is expected to be operational as of 2020, pending the adoption in the European Parliament and Council.

Questions and answers: European Travel Information and Authorisation System

www.dw.com/sr/nije-viza-%C5%A1ta-je-onda/a-41083364

Further debunking by the Insider: https://theins.ru/antifake/101578

Keywords: Visa liberalisation
Countries: Moldova, Ukraine, EU, Georgia
More
The end of visa-free regime for Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova
Additional details: In practise, the decision reintroduces the visa regime. It will be more difficult to enter the Schengen area for the citizens of Moldova, Ukraine, Georgia.
Language / Targeted audience: Moldova
Disinforming outlet(s): Sputnik.md
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on visa-free regime and ETIAS. https://euvsdisinfo.eu/report/shocking-news-eu-is-preparing-new-visas-for-serbians-this-is-the-end-of-integrations/

The European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) is not a visa. A visa free traveller does obviously not need a visa to enter the Schengen area, and ETIAS will not change this. ETIAS will be an automated IT system created to identify any risks associated with a visa-exempt visitor travelling to the Schengen Area. This concerns citizens of all visa free countries, currently over 60 countries including the US and Canada.

ETIAS is expected to be operational as of 2020, pending the adoption in the European Parliament and Council.

Questions and answers: European Travel Information and Authorisation System

www.dw.com/sr/nije-viza-%C5%A1ta-je-onda/a-41083364

For debunking see also the Insider: https://theins.ru/antifake/101578

Keywords: Visa liberalisation
Countries: Moldova, Ukraine, EU, Georgia
More
73% of Sweden's population believes that integration of migrants is unsuccessful
Additional details: According to a poll conducted by the European Commission, 55% of the EU population think that the process of integration of the majority of migrants in the country is unsuccessful.

For example, 73% of Sweden's population believes that integration of migrants is unsuccessful, in France - 64% and in Germany - 63%.
Language / Targeted audience: Georgian
Disinforming outlet(s): Alt-Info.com
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

According to the Eurobarometer, 54% of the respondents believe that the process of integrating migrants in their countries is successful, with 40% considering it unsuccessful and 6% having answered “I do not know”. In the case of Sweden, 52% respondents answered that integration was not successful and 46% said it was successful. The indicator equals to 46% for France, while according to Alt-Info’s version, it is 64%. In Germany, 48% of the respondents consider the process to be unsuccessful, which is 15% less than Alt-Info’s version.

Migration is  a commonly exploited issue in pro-Kremlin disinformation. Further debunking by Myth Detector

Keywords: EU, Migration crisis
Countries: Germany, Georgia, Sweden, France
More
New evidence on the flight MH17: debris fell against the laws of physics, it was an explosion inside the plane
Additional details: New evidence on the flight MH17: debris fell against the laws of physics, according to the Dutch version. In fact, only an explosion inside the plane could cause this. The timing of the tragedy and the place where it happened benefited Ukraine.

 
Language / Targeted audience: Russian
Link to the disinformation: https://www.kp.ru/daily/26829/3869189/
Disinforming outlet(s): kp.ru
Reported by: East Stratcom Network
Disproof note:

New disinformation along common, recurring pro-Kremlin disinforming messages about MH17. https://euvsdisinfo.eu/disinformation-cases/?text=mh17&disinfo_issue=&date=

The Joint Investigation Team has concluded that flight MH17 was shot down on 17 July 2014 by a missile of the 9M38 series, launched by a BUK-TELAR, from farmland in the vicinity of Pervomaiskiy (or: Pervomaiskyi). At that time, the area was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. The BUK-TELAR was brought in from the territory of the Russian Federation and subsequently, after having shot down flight MH-17, was taken back to the Russian Federationhttps://www.om.nl/onderwerpen/mh17-crash/@96068/jit-flight-mh17-shot/

Keywords: MH17
Countries: Ukraine, The Netherlands
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