Disinfo: Crimea’s return to Russia is not the reason for bad Russian-Ukrainian relations

Summary

A coup and a seizure of power took place in Ukraine, and only after that, and from that moment onwards, Russian views and methods became completely contradictory to the Ukrainian leadership .

After that, Crimea returned to Russia, not the other way around. Therefore, the deterioration of Russian relations with Ukraine has nothing to do with Crimea.

Disproof

There was no coup d’état in Kyiv in 2014; this is a longstanding pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine's Euromaidan protests.

The spontaneous onset of the Euromaidan protests was a reaction from several segments of the Ukrainian population to former President Yanukovych’s sudden departure from the promised Association Agreement with the European Union in November 2013, as a result of pressure from Russia.

The article also contains a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on the annexation of Crimea claiming that Crimea has "returned" to Russia.

The transfer of Crimea and Sevastopol to Ukraine was first officially agreed on 25 January 1954 at a meeting of the Presidium of the CPSU Central Committee. The members of the Presidium, voting for the transfer of Crimea to Ukraine, took into account objective reasons: “the commonality of the economy, territorial proximity and close economic and cultural ties between the Crimean region and the Ukrainian SSR.”

On 19 February 1954, the Supreme Soviet of the USSR confirmed the need for Crimea to join Soviet Ukraine. Legally, the transfer of Crimea to Ukraine ended on 26 April 1954, on the basis of the relevant law of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. According to international law, Crimea is a part of Ukraine.

After the collapse of the USSR, Russia reaffirmed respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine.

By signing the 1997 Friendship Treaty, Russia also recognised that Crimea is an integral part of Ukraine.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has stated that “the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol amounts to an international armed conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. This international armed conflict began at the latest on 26 February 2014 when the Russian Federation deployed members of its armed forces to gain control over parts of  Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian Government".

Read similar cases claiming that Crimean people have expressed their desire to rejoin Russia in a democratic process and that Crimea never belonged to Ukraine.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 205
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/07/2020
  • Language/target audience: Arabic
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Coup, Euromaidan, Crimea, Ukrainian statehood

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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Ukraine openly sabotages the implementation of the Minsk agreements

The Ukrainian authorities openly sabotage the implementation of the Minsk agreements and the Steinmeier Formula. Kyiv was not originally going to follow these agreements.

The fact that Ukraine will not consider the option of amending the Constitution to consolidate the legal status of certain regions of Donetsk and Luhansk regions is a direct violation of the Minsk agreements.

The Ukrainian side is not going to implement the Minsk agreements and this will continue as long as the West turns a blind eye to what is happening. Until Zelenskyy receives an order from above, he will maintain a state of “neither peace nor war.”

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that Ukraine refuses to implement the Minsk agreements.

In the interview mentioned in the article, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba said, "point number one: Ukraine remains committed to the 'Normandy Format' and the Minsk process. Point number two: of course, we must constantly brainstorm and reflect. If this does not work, and if Russia destroys this format, then what next? We have to keep various options on the table. But, I emphasise that these are backup options. Now we are working to ensure that the 'Normandy Format' and the Minsk process are successful and lead to an end to the war and the de-occupation of Ukrainian territories."

In the next 10-15 years, more that 80% of humanity could die from COVID-19

In the next 10-15 years, more than 80% of humanity could die from coronavirus, except very isolated wild tribes. According to one version, not yet fully proven, only 17% of the world’s population develops long-term immunity to coronavirus. Everyone else will be sick and sick once again until they die. Such prospect for humanity was reported by The Guardian, citing a study by scientists from King’s College London.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory about the 2019-nCoV coronavirus.

Misleading information in the article. There were no such statements in The Guardian article and the study that was mentioned there.

Allegations about Kiselyov-controlled RT, Russia’s implication in Skripal poisoning and MH17 downing work only for anti-Russian audiences

Lithuania has banned the broadcasting of five RT TV channels on its territory, following Latvia’s analogous decision. The decision claims that RT is controlled by Dmitry Kiselyov, whereas, in reality, RT has nothing to do with news agency Rossiya Segodnia chaired by him.

Allegations about Kiselyov-controlled RT, Skripal poisoned by Vladimir Putin and MH17 downing by Kremlin are fine for anti-Russian audiences. The West increasingly sees no reason to waste its resources on Russia and the forces that sympathize with Russia, apparently considering it as hopeless to persuade and attract them on its side.

This sloppy approach was the product of West’s monopoly in information, political, and ideological spheres. It is because of this monopoly that at a certain stage the West ceased to consider it necessary to rigorously and professionally elaborate its policies on a general level, but also in what concerns its competitors. As a result, the West did not notice how it lost the monopoly because of the loss of competences.

Disproof

This message questions Dmitry Kiselyov's relation to RT and presents RT broadcasting bans in Latvia and Lithuania, Skripal poisoning, and MH17 downing as West's anti-Russian provocations to influence public opinion. It is consistent with the recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about West's deliberate anti-Russian activities. In fact, the Skripal case, and the downing of MH17 are well-documented cases of acts of Kremlin-enabled violence outside Russia.

Latvia and Lithuania have banned the state-owned Russian television channel RT, saying it is controlled by an individual, Dmitriy Kiselyov, who is under EU sanctions. According to the Electronic Mass Media Council (NEPLP), Latvia's national media watchdog, RT and the network of channels operated by it are under Kiselyov's "effective control".