Disinfo: Crimea reunited with Russia after a referendum on the peninsula

Summary

Relations between the Russian Federation and Western countries have worsened due to the situation in Ukraine and around Crimea. Crimea reunited with Russia after a referendum on the peninsula. The West, having accused the Russian Federation of interference, imposed sanctions against Russia. Moscow took retaliatory measures, headed for import substitution and more than once stated that it is counterproductive talking with Russia in sanction-language. Russia has repeatedly stated that it is not a party to the conflict in Ukraine and the subject of Minsk settlement agreements.

 

Disproof

This is a mix of several recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about illegal annexation of Crimea, war in Ukraine and Minsk Agreements.

The so-called referendum was organised under Russian illegal occupation without complying with neither the Ukrainian electoral code nor the Russia electoral code. The annexation has been condemned by the UN GA (see the resolution A/RES/68/262 on the territorial integrity of Ukraine). No international body recognises the so-called referendum, announced on 27 February 2014 and held on 16 March 2014. A year after the illegal annexation, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum. The European Union does not recognise Crimea's annexation and continues to condemn it as a violation of international law. EU sanctions continue to be in place against Russia as a consequence of the annexation. For the EU's statement on the sixth anniversary of Crimea annexation see here.

Regarding permanent denial of  Russia’s involvement in war, Russia is pretending that has no role in this armed conflict, despite massive evidence in this regard, More, pro Kremlin propaganda claimes that Russia helps to resolve the internal conflict in Ukraine. The European Union stated in July 2014 that "arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation".  At the NATO Summit in Wales in September 2014, NATO leaders condemned in the strongest terms Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine and demanded Russia to stop and withdraw its forces from Ukraine and from the country’s border. NATO leaders also demanded Russia comply with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities; refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine; halt the flow of weapons, equipment, people and money across the border to the separatists; and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border.

In 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's military presence in Ukraine.

The EU has condemned the clear violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity by acts of aggression by the Russian armed forces since February 2014.

Read similar cases claiming that there is no evidence of Russian presence in Ukraine, that rumours about Russian military presence in Donbas come from linguistic misunderstanding, that Crimea never belonged to Ukraine,  that Crimean people have expressed their desire to rejoin Russia in a democratic processthat Russia has never participated in the Ukrainian crisis.

 

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 205
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 23/06/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: EU, Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Diplomacy with Russia, War in Ukraine, Sanctions, Referendum, Crimea

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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