DISINFO: Escalation of tensions in Kosovo caused by NATO
The current escalation of tensions in Kosovo is caused by the destabilising actions of NATO, which wants to worsen the economic and political crisis that the region is experiencing.
Disinformation not backed up with evidence, baselessly blaming NATO for a complicated situation that has been long brewing despite EU and US efforts to defuse tensions. NATO, a frequent target of pro-Kremlin disinformation, didn’t play any role in increasing those tensions. In fact, both Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vuciv and Kosovo’s Prime Minister Albin Kurti requested some action from NATO to play some role to address the crisis.
On the other hand, Russian officials, media and Telegram channels have been trying for a long time to inflame tensions around Kosovo and the Western Balkans. On 15 November 2022, Russia launched its new online channel RT Balkan in Serbian language, which RT head Margarita Simonyan presented with the words: “Because Serbia is Kosovo”. According to a recent report by the European Council on Foreign Relations, "[the Russian media's] aim is mainly to attack the legitimacy of Kosovo’s statehood, but also to fuel ethnic tensions by portraying the Serb community in Kosovo as victims of an abusive central government.”
See other examples of similar disinformation narratives, such as claims that the EU wants to expand its imperialism in the Balkans, that the West has promoted separatism in Yugoslavia, that Pristina is entirely responsible for the tension in Northern Kosovo, or that the West showed double standards with its treatment of Kosovo and Crimea.
This disinformation claim was broadcast on the date mentioned above. Due to the EU decisions to temporarily restrict the spread and dissemination of RT, Sputnik and other instruments used to manipulate information and promote disinformation about the invasion of Ukraine inside the EU, access to the link may not work inside the EU.