Disinfo: West-funded Belarusian opposition plans a genocide amid the coronavirus outbreak

Summary

The Belarusian authorities should impose a curfew upon opposition political parties, youth movements and independent media, to prevent them from spreading fakes and sowing panic among the population. The opposition calls people to take on squares, to be infected and die. Therefore they pursue the genocide of the Belarusian people and wish to put the blame for it on the ministry of health and the president. The opposition calls people to take part in anti-governmental protests on West’s instructions and Western money.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory and ungrounded claims aimed to discredit the West, democratic Belarusian opposition, civic activists and independent journalists. This disinformation message is a modification of recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about western attempts to organize a colour revolution in Belarus.

See earlier disinformation cases alleging that the Belarusian opposition, civic activists and independent journalists make kill lists for Western security bodies, that pro-Western Belarusian opposition prepares 'kill lists' and genocide, and that the Belarusian opposition plans genocide with coronavirus-infected, Soros-funded, test tubes, given by Pompeo.

All these cases were published by pseudo-regional Belarusian websites associated with the pro-Kremlin propaganda network, as explained here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 195
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 16/04/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Belarus
  • Keywords: coronavirus, Genocide, Colour revolutions, Conspiracy, The West
  • Outlet: Berestje-News

Disclaimer

Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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Secret US laboratories in Ukraine might have provoked cholera, Ukraine is under external US rule

The US Embassy in Ukraine has officially recognised for the first time the presence in this country of American biological laboratories for experiments with viruses.

A three-page MPs’ request contained a request to explain the appropriateness of the presence of such laboratories. The request alleges that during the work of American laboratories in Ukraine, outbreaks of unknown and various diseases occurred from time to time, which led to deaths. Deputies of the Verkhovna Rada claim that from the laboratories periodically, for one reason or another, leaks of virus strains occurred.

11 years ago a virus of unknown origin arose in Ternopil, which caused hemorrhagic pneumonia: 450 Ukrainians died. In 2011, there was an outbreak of cholera in Ukraine – 33 people died, in 2014, 800 Ukrainians became infected with cholera. In January 2016, 20 people were hospitalised in Kharkiv. Two months later, 364 deaths were recorded in the country.

In addition, the MPs found that the embassy is trying to hide information about the work in Ukraine of two centres involved in the study of pathogens dangerous to humans, which started three years ago. The creation in Ukraine of a separate laboratory for such pathogens indicates the conduct of experiments on humans. This is prohibited in the US but allowed in Ukraine – both because of the imperfect Ukrainian legislation but also because of the external governance of Ukraine by the US parties which allows turning Ukraine in a field of biological experiments. The current government in Ukraine does not want to reveal the truth, fearing the wrath of the “Washington’s Obkom”.

Disproof

In response to claims that the US control secret laboratories in Ukraine, the US Embassy in Ukraine issued a statement, which is far from the "official recognition" of what the disinformation narrative pretends. The statement reads:

"Embassy would like to set the record straight regarding disinformation spreading in some circles in Ukraine that mirrors Russian disinformation regarding the strong U.S.-Ukrainian partnership to reduce biological threats. Here in Ukraine, the U.S. Department of Defense’s Biological Threat Reduction Program works with the Ukrainian Government to consolidate and secure pathogens and toxins of security concern in Ukrainian government facilities, while allowing for peaceful research and vaccine development. We also work with our Ukrainian partners to ensure Ukraine can detect and report outbreaks caused by dangerous pathogens before they pose security or stability threats."

The statement also reminds, that Ukraine, like other post-Soviet countries, participates in US programmes aimed to reduce biological threats. Read more about the Biological Threat Reduction Program here.

The statements that cholera or other viruses might have escaped from the "secret laboratories" does not have any supporting evidence. Illegal "experiments on humans" are prohibited by the Ukrainian criminal code. The legal clinical trials concern only newly invented drugs, they are carried out by pharmaceutical companies worldwide under the control of local and international inspections.

Belarus belongs to the Russian civilisation, its integration with the EU would mean the extinction of the Belarusian people

Belarus’s statehood formed within the all-Russian civilisation, as opposed to anti-national model and a union with Poland. Belarus-Poland union has always been anti-national as it aimed to liquidate the Belarusian people. The Belarus-Russia union, in contrast, has always been progressive. Therefore any plans about Belarus’s integration with the EU will result in the loss of the country’s independence and the extinction of the Belarusian people.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory consistent with recurring disinformation narratives about the all-Russian nation and Russian world/civilisation, Poland's hostile plans towards Belarus and Western attempts to destabilise Belarus.

The publication puts forward a false dilemma about the direction of Belarus' political development (union with Russia vs. an unavoidable loss of independence degradation). This false dilemma was repeatedly promoted in earlier disinformation cases here, here, and here.

Washington backed the demolition of the statue to Soviet commander in Prague

The report of the American company Squire Patton Boggs, which substantiated the demolition of the monument to Marshal Konev in Prague, was of great importance for anti-Russian politicians in the Czech Republic. They write thousands of such reports every year. Of course, for the Czech political community, for their establishment, the report of a big American law firm is important.

If the business took place in America, no one would pay such big attention to it – for them, it would be just a report of another lobbying company, albeit a large one. For the Czech Republic, a small country, which is largely dependent on the mood in Brussels and Washington, this is of great importance for them and has become one of the points of the PR campaign in the PR war around the monument to Marshal Konev.

The Russian embassy will find out the role of the USA in the demolition of the monument to Konev. The Washington office of the company did not respond to requests. Apparently, they have something to hide.

Disproof

This is a recurring disinformation narrative about the statue of Marshall Konev in Prague. It is also consistent with common pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about Russophobia and the supposedly hostile anti-Russian intentions of the West, based on which Russia can cast itself as the victim. The democratic decision to move the Konev statue to a museum has raised the ire of the Kremlin and even led Moscow to open a symbolic criminal case to investigate the alleged "defiling of symbols of Russia's military glory."

No supportive documents are given to prove the existence of an American law firm report about the statue of Marshall Konev in Prague. Even if such a report exists, it would not be binding for the democratically-elected local municipal council, which voted to the remove the statue in 2019. The leadership of Prague's Municipal District 6, which retains legal ownership of the statue, has voted to move the monument to a museum - not demolish it - and replace it with a memorial commemorating Soviet sacrifices in the fight against Hitler in general, and the liberation of Prague in particular. More information available here.