Disinfo: EU abandoned Italy, while Russia helped

Summary

While the European Union abandoned Italy, only Russia and China gave the country a helping hand.

Disproof

Recurring Pro-Kremlin narrative that the EU left Italy alone to fight coronavirus. The European Commission has approved a €50 million Italian aid scheme to support the production and supply of medical devices, as well as to help Italy provide the necessary medical treatment to those infected. On March 18, the European Union also received a Chinese aid package, including masks and 50,000 testing kits that were fully allocated to Italy, as Rome faces the most urgent needs among member states in the coronavirus crisis. On March 13, the European Union proposed a Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative, envisaging EUR 835 million for Italy. On March 26, the European Parliament unanimously approved the initiative. The European Central Bank announced a 750 billion euro ($820 billion) asset purchase program in an effort to help mitigate the impact of the coronavirus outbreak, as the death toll in Europe continues to rise. As part of the program, investors will purchase Italian securities to help the country counter the serious risks of the coronavirus. Since the hospitals are overcrowded in Italy, Germany has started to accept coronavirus patients from this harder-hit country. Additionally, Germany and France sent a total of 2 million face masks to the Italian government. Read further debunking on Myth Detector.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 190
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 25/03/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Georgian, Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: EU, China, Italy, Russia
  • Keywords: coronavirus, EU disintegration
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Swedish oligarchs impede the introduction of quarantine measures

Swedish oligarchs, in cahoots with the authorities, refused to introduce quarantine measures to avoid financial losses. [—] Sweden is not testing people with coronavirus symptoms. Thus, the real number of cases is impossible to establish.

Disproof

An unfounded coronavirus conspiracy theory. As of 23 March 2020, there were 1906 cases of confirmed coronavirus infections in Sweden, and 21 people there have died. The Swedish Public Health Authority's highest priority is to protect the public. It has declared that an ‘extraordinary situation’ exists in Sweden. New protective measures are designed to curb the spread of the new coronavirus, protect people at especially high risk, and assure the provision of care and therapeutic products to the public. In Sweden, as in most EU countries, there are strict regulations for educational institutions, mass events were cancelled. The population is strongly advised to stay in quarantine and observe good hygiene practices. Sweden has temporarily banned travel to the EU via Sweden. The current entry ban does not affect travel from another EU country to Sweden, nor does it apply to Swedish citizens. See details here. A site with FAQ on Sweden's response to the COVID-19 outbreak from the Swedish Public Health Authority

Neither doctors, nor food supplies in Lithuania

The coronavirus epidemic in Lithuania demonstrates with all clarity the results of the democratic reforms on the road to the “Bright European Future”. [—]

There are only five medical facilities in the country; in the largest cities: in Kaunas, Klaipėda, Šiauliai, Panevėžys and Vilnius. In rural areas nothing is left, except for something like first aid stations. If there are only a few hospitals, there are few doctors. This has become on of the largest challenges. Students from the last years of medical schools are summoned to fight the outbreak, but the shortage of specialist is disastrous. The second problem, connected to the results of the “democratic reforms” is that the country does not have any strategic resources of food supplies.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative portraying Lithuania as a failed state. The 5 hospitals mentioned in the disinformation claim are not the only hospitals in the country. Rather these are the largest hospitals that are designated to test and treat the COVID-19 patients. Lithuania has also established mobile points for testing patients for suspected cases of the coronavirus. Lithuanian society has mobilized to fight the pandemic, student and other volunteers are assisting the state and medics to disseminate public information, procure medical equipment, reach out to the most vulnerable parts of the society and other activities. Lithuania does have strategic resources of food supplies, which are stocked in accordance to national law.

The coronavirus pandemic is the ruling elites' alternative to a world war

There was a need for a replacement of a World War, something that would level out the disbalances of the capitalist economy, revive it and still maintain the status-quo of the ruling elites. The alternative to a shooting war would be a cold war, or, as it is preferred to be called today, a hybrid war. A hybrid war engages elements of finance, trade, psychology, information technology, cyber attacks, special forces against the enemy, but it does not give the rulers the authority to use command methods on the economy. And this is necessary for overcoming the dis-balances of the economy. And here comes the coronavirus. The rulers started to blow up a threat, create an atmosphere of fear. Using the panic, the authorities are given unlimited powers and start actively to interfere in the economy.

Disproof

An unfounded conspiracy theory, sharing a recurrent pro-Kremlin narrative about "secret elites" controlling world leaders. See related pro-Kremlin disinformation cases about the coronavirus.