Disinfo: EU sanctions bypass the UN and hinder efforts to fight coronavirus

Summary

…Unilateral and unlawful EU sanctions, bypassing the UN Security Council, which already complicated (Syria‘s) humanitarian operation… … maintaining sanctions at its full strength is completely inhumane, and hinders the fight against viral (coronavirus) infection.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlindisinformation narrative trying to change the nature ofsanctions implemented onSyria. EU sanctions on Syria aretargeted at individuals and entities who ordered or carried out attacks and torture against their own people, made or used chemical weapons, built their personal fortune thanks to the war. EU sanctions are designed in a way that only targets these people and these activities, avoiding any negative impact on the population. See our video here for more details. In 2005, byUN Resolution 1636, the Security Council imposed travel bans and asset freezes on people suspected of being involved in the 14 February 2005 terrorist bombing in Beirut, Lebanon, in which Syria was implicated according to a UN report. The EU implemented those measures by adoptingCouncil Common Position 2005/888/CFSP andCouncil Regulation (EC) No 305/2006. EU sanctions, imposed since 9 May 2011, respond to the repression perpetrated on the Syrian people by the Syrian regime and its supporters, including through the use of live ammunition against peaceful protesters, and the regime’s involvement in the proliferation and use of chemical weapons. On 27 May 2013, the Council of the EU adopted conclusions in which it condemned the violence and the continued widespread andsystematic gross violations of human rights in Syria, which resulted into more restrictive measures against Syriaon 31 May 2013, while the latest sanctions were adopted in May 2020. EU sanctions are not impeding Syria’s medical response to Covid-19. They do not concern medicines, medical equipment or medical assistance provided to the population at large, and they do not prohibit the export to Syria of respirators, disinfectants, hand sanitizers or detergents used to respond to Covid-19. Furthermore, the EU Commission published detailed guidance on how coronavirus-related humanitarian aid can be sent to countries and areas around the world that are subject to EU sanctions. The goal of these measures is to put pressure on the Syrian regime to halt its repression and negotiate a lasting political settlement of the Syrian crisis in line with UN Security Council Resolution 2254 under UN auspices. They are part and parcel of the EU’s wider approach to the Syria crisis, as outlined in the EU strategy on Syria.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 202
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 16/06/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Arabic
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Syria
  • Keywords: coronavirus, humanitarian aid, European Union, UN, Sanctions, Syrian War
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Disproof

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Disproof

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Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Salisbury poisoning in reaction to the BBC series broadcast this week. After a hearing in the Court of Protection, British High Court Justice David Williams issued an approved judgement about what had happened to the Skripals around three weeks after their poisoning in March 2018. The British Police have presented a solid chain of evidence on the Skripal case, with pictures, connecting the suspects to the locations in the case. Parts of the material have been released to the public. The evidence was sufficient to charge two Russian nationals, Anatoliy Chepiga and Aleksandr Mishkin with the attack on the Skripals, both Russian military intelligence operatives from the GRU, who travelled to the UK using fake names and documents. Following this attack, the United Kingdom notified the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), invited them to confirm the identity of the substance involved, and briefed members of the Security Council. The OPCW’s independent expert laboratories confirmed the UK’s identification of the Russian produced Novichok nerve agent, specifically the purity of the toxin while emphasising that the OPCW team “worked independently and was not involved in the national investigation by the UK authorities", to ensure the integrity of the examinations and investigations. The pro Kremlin narrative also claims that the Skripal story "starts to be forgotten". In fact, the UK's official assessment of the incident was supported by 28 other countries which responded similarly. Altogether, an unprecedented number of 153 Russian diplomats were expelled around the world. See more disinformation cases on the Skripals poisoning (Salisbury poisoning).