Disinfo: 24 Ukrainian sailors were captured after they violated Russia's border

Summary

The Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe called on Russia to release the 24 Ukrainian sailors who were captured in November 2018 after they violated the Russian border.

Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the November 2018 Kerch incident. On 25 November 2018, border patrol boats belonging to Russia’s FSB security service seized two small Ukrainian armoured artillery vessels and a tug boat and their crews after shooting at them, wounding several Ukrainian servicemen and arresting 24. Russia argued that they were in Russian waters. The EU has urged Russia to release the captured crew. However, the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov, as addressed by the 2003 bilateral agreement between Ukraine and Russia are defined as the internal waters of both Russia and Ukraine. The agreement gives both parties the power to inspect suspicious vessels. Furthermore, both the 2003 bilateral agreement and UN Convention on the Law of the Sea provide for the freedom of navigation. More cases about the Kerch Strait incident are available here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 158
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 26/06/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Czech
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: Azov sea, Kerch, International Law, War in Ukraine
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Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance is anti-Russian

The Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance has a clear mission – to stigmatise the Soviet’s past and to justify the Ukrainian nationalists. It has to develop a state ideology directed against Russia and the Russian-speaking population of Ukraine.

Disproof

This is a pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about anti-Russian sentiments in Ukraine and in the West. The Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance is not directed against Russia or the Soviet past. It was established on 31 May 2006, as a special governmental institution for the restoration and preservation of the national memory of the Ukrainian people. The Institute directs the decommunisation process in Ukraine and provides access to state archives concerning repression during the Soviet past in accordance with the law “On access to the archives of repressive bodies of the communist totalitarian regime from 1917-1991”. The Institute has three main functions: first, to restore, preserve, and promote the national memory of the Ukrainian people; second, to prevent the use of symbols of totalitarian regimes; third, to promote patriotism, national consciousness, and active position among Ukrainian citizens.

Ukraine is not able to repair and modernise its aircraft without Russia, it is a safety risk

Ukraine has serious problems with the repair and modernisation of the Soviet MiG-29 fighters because of the sanctions imposed against Russia. The Lviv Aircraft Repair Plant reported that it lost the opportunity to acquire Russian spare parts for the fighter-planes, which is why it did not fulfil the contract for updating the aircraft. Experts note that the attempts of Ukrainian specialists to independently modernise the MiG-29 can make the operation of the machine unsafe.

Disproof

No evidence given for a safety risk. There are no such words about anti-Russian sanctions in the statement RT.com referred to. The Lviv State Aviation Repair Plant was accused of failing to fulfil the contract to repair two aircraft in time. In the press release it was mentioned that the plant is going to file an appeal to the court decision, as the company was forced to adhere to the norms of the law, that is: “to modernise the aircraft in the absence of spare parts, since the result of the above decision of the National Security and Defence Council created restrictions in purchasing them”. But there is no mention that the contract was not fulfil at the time due to the lack of details from Russia. The website of the Lviv State Aviation Repair Plant, which is engaged in repair and modernisation of aircraft, including the MiG-29, notes that “we are separately proud of the promptly implemented import substitution program. It is about manufacturing parts that were previously supplied from manufacturers in the Russian Federation”. Also in April 2019, the plant noted that the technological capabilities for the restoration of military aviation were expanded.

Because of the refusal to use Russian spare parts, Ukrainian plants have to find other channels to get these details. Because of this, repair and modernisation may take longer time than usual.

Europe supported Ukraine as an anti-Russian project and for this Ukrainians paid a colossal price

Europe supported Ukraine as an anti-Russian project and for this the Ukrainian nation paid a colossal price. The price was Crimea, civil war in Donbas, tens of thousands of dead, a destroyed economy. And today the price is also the dismantlement of Poroshenko’s regime.

Ukraine as a political nation has a very bleak outlook, and even the Europeans – those who are paying the money – are now thinking whether it was worth it.

Disproof

This is a disinformation message that combines several recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about abandoned and failing Ukraine, Ukrainian statehood, the annexation of Crimea, and the war in eastern Ukraine.

In fact, the Ukrainian economy has been growing.