Disinfo: East Germany was attached to the West as a colony

Summary

30 years ago, on the 3rd October 1990, West and East Germany united and became one state. This is the official version. In fact it was unfriendly incorporation and East Germany, former GDR betrayed by the Soviet Union attached to the West as a colony.

Disproof

Historical revisionism and disinformation about the unification of Germany. The downfall of the German Democratic Republic was triggered by the decay of the other communist regimes in eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. After the fall of the Berlin wall, first free multiparty elections took place in East Germany, where a the eastern counterpart of Christian Democratic Union won the majority of votes. The new government began negotiations for a treaty of unification of Germany, amid a surging tide of refugees from East to West. The final barrier to reunification fell in July 1990 when German chancellor Kohl prevailed upon Gorbachev to drop his objections to a unified Germany within the NATO alliance in return for sizable financial aid to the Soviet Union. A unification treaty was ratified by the Bundestag and the People’s Chamber in September and went into effect on October 3, 1990. The German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic as five additional Länder (federal states). Read more about the reunification of Germany here. The economic and other differenced between the Eastern and Western parts of Germany still exist, but there is no basis to claim that the Eastern part of the country is colonized by the Western one.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 214
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 04/10/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Germany
  • Keywords: Historical revisionism
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Events in Belarus are part of a hybrid war organised from abroad

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Disproof

Recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative framing popular protests as Western-backed colour revolutions, part of a campaign to portray massive mobilisations in Belarus as a destabilisation effort orchestrated from abroad. No evidence is provided to support the allegations. Contrary to the claim, protests in Belarus erupted to contest the results of the presidential election in Belarus on the 9th of August, which were not monitored by independent experts, and are largely considered fraudulent by both international observers and a big part of the Belarusian society. On 19 August 2020 the European Council called Belarus's elections neither free nor fair. Mobilisations were organised and carried out by local actors, opposition politicians and Belarusian citizens, without any foreign involvement. See other examples of pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives in Belarus, such as claims that the EU reaction to Lukashenko’s victory is an example of Western double standards; that the same lack of democracy and repression is present in EU countries that criticize them in Minsk; , and that the Ukrainian secret services may have planned terrorist attacks in Belarusian territory; that the West wants to prepare another Maidan in the country; or that Belarusians, Ukrainians and Russians are one single nation.

Germany denies Russia consular access to Navalny despite four legal aid requests

Despite repeated requests for legal aid by Russian prosecutors, German authorities are denying the Russian Embassy consular access to activist Alexei Navalny.

Disproof

The story advances the recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on the poisoning of Alexei Navalny. The report falsely suggests that Russian prosecutors' requests for legal aid would oblige Berlin to grant Russian Embassy officials consular access to Navalny. However, legal aid and consular access are governed by two separate international agreements. In the context of the Navalny case, any requests for legal aid would fall under the 1959 European Convention on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov himself stated that the 1959 treaty only applies to the "transfer of the biomaterial, test results, clinical samples and medical documentation required for a thorough, full inquiry into Navalny's illness and hospitalization." On the other hand, consular access falls within the scope of the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations. The German Foreign Ministry spokesperson said 28 September that "Mr. Navalny is free to receive the consular visit if he wants to" [emphasis added], in line with Article 36(a) of the Convention:

"[C]onsular officers shall be free to communicate with nationals of the sending State and to have access to them. Nationals of the sending State shall have the same freedom with respect to communication with and access to consular officers of the sending State" [emphasis added].

The provision in italics means that consular officers cannot pay their co-nationals unsolicited visits abroad. Even a citizen under arrest or pending prosecution can only be visited by a consular official abroad "if he so requests," per Article 36(b).

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Disproof

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