DISINFO: Crimea's re-unification with Russia was legal
  • Outlet: sputniknews.gr (archived)*
  • Date of publication: June 08, 2020
  • Outlet language(s): Greek
  • Reported in: Issue 201
  • Countries / regions discussed: US, Ukraine, Russia
illegal annexation Geoffrey Pyatt Victoria Nuland Crimea NATO

DISINFO: Crimea's re-unification with Russia was legal


US Ambassador in Athens Geoffrey Pyatt insists that Crimea’s reunification with Russia was illegal. He forgets that no illegal annexation took place and that the citizens of Crimea decided in a democratic referendum in 2014 and with huge majority to re-unite with the motherland. It was the United States which was intervening in Ukraine’s domestic affairs as evidenced by the phone call between Pyatt, who was the US Ambassador in Kiev in 2014 and former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State on European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland. Pyatt and Nuland were discussing the composition of the new Ukrainian government.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the illegal annexation of Crimea. Crimea is a part of Ukraine and was illegally annexed by Russia. In 2014, Russian troops obliged the parliament of Crimea to organise a referendum, which was illegitimate under international law, and then formally annexed the peninsula and brought it under Russian territorial control. The annexation has been condemned by the UNGA (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.


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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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