Disinfo: Belarus’ Lukashenko mocking Russia by carrying out a military exercise with NATO and UK

Summary

Belarus’ president Lukashenko is mocking Russia by carrying out a joint military exercise with NATO and the United Kingdom. British troops will deploy in what not so long ago the West considered “an advanced post of tyranny” and against which it still keeps some sanctions.

Disproof

As a sovereign country independent since 1991, Belarus has every right to take part in military exercises with any country it wishes according to international law. The British and Belarusian armies have already cooperated for military exchanges in previous years. The event is held on a bilateral basis in the framework of cooperation in the training of peacekeeping personnel, aiming at Belarus' participation in the UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon. According to Belarusian Defence Minister, Oleg Belokonev, the country wants to remain close to Russia but with a military training connection to NATO, as is the case of Serbia. This is part of a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative denying the existence of a Belarusian nationhood separated from Russia. This narrative has increased since 2018 amidst Russian pressure to further integrate both countries into a single Union State. You can see other examples in our database, such as allegations that genuine independence will only be possible in a union with Russia, that pro-Western development would mean the end of Belarus, or that the US wants to turn Belarus into a Russophobic country, destroy its economy and statehood, orchestrate a colour revolution, a coup and a foreign invasion and turn it into a colony of the West.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 188
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 05/03/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Spanish, Castilian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: UK, Belarus
  • Keywords: Union State of Belarus and Russia, Alexander Lukashenko, NATO
see more

Lithuanian Foreign Ministry tries to rewrite the history of World War II

The Lithuanian Foreign Ministry suggests that the Parliament should condemn attempts to rewrite history. The unpleasant part of this initiative is that Russia appears in its wording, while Russia actually did not rewrite any history. On the contrary, it carefully defends the historical truth, which some politicians, in particular, the Lithuanian Foreign Minister, are trying to reconsider and even to legally prohibit.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism – it accuses the Baltic states, Ukraine and Poland in “falsification and re-writing” of their history. It is a fact that both Nazi Germany and the Stalinist USSR were totalitarian regimes, which caused the deaths of tens of millions of people. It is also proven that the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact contained the Secret Supplementary Protocol, which assumed the division of the territories of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, and Romania into Soviet and Nazi spheres of influence. The Soviet Union's occupation of the Baltic states lasted from 1940-1941 and 1944-1990 and resulted in mass deportations and repressions against local populations. Read similar cases claiming that Lithuanian authorities rewrite the history of their own country, that Poland and Lithuania question the status of Russia as a country who won WWII, and that US vassals question the outcome and results of the WWII.

US Department of Defense has a secret biological laboratory in Georgia

There is a so-called Public Health Research Centre or Lugar Laboratory in Georgia.

It is believed that this centre contains a biological laboratory belonging to the US Department of Defence. In 2015, the Russian Foreign Ministry announced that the Lugar Center is hosting a research centre for the United States Armed Forces.

Russian officials suspect that the US and Georgian authorities are trying to cover up the activities of this biological laboratory that examines serious epidemic diseases.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory based on recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about biological weapons and the Lugar Lab in Georgia.

The Richard Lugar Center for Public Health Research is a facility of the National Center for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC), which became operational in August 2013. The Lugar centre is a top-tiered institution in NCDC’s laboratory network and serves as a reference laboratory for Georgia’s public health system.

American intelligence has arbitrarily accused Russia of interfering in the 2016 US elections

American intelligence has arbitrarily accused Russia of interfering in the 2016 US election process and for nearly two years, allegations of attempts to influence American democracy have been investigated by US special prosecutor Robert Mueller, “to break down the conspiracy theory between the Russian authorities and the Republican President (Donald) Trump.” In the end, Mueller admitted that there was no conspiracy and found no evidence of it.

Disproof

A recurring narrative of denials which Moscow has issued regarding its involvement in the 2016 presidential election in the United States employing the long-established charge of Russophobia which the Kremlin uses to deflect criticism, however legitimate.

Before the Robert Mueller report was published, Russian meddling in the 2016 election had already been established by US intelligence agencies. Thus, the Special Investigation was primarily concerned with "whether any Americans […] joined the Russian conspiracies to influence the election" (p.2).