DISINFO: Foreign diplomats interfere in internal affairs of Russia
  • Outlet: de.rt.com (archived)*
  • Date of publication: February 02, 2021
  • Outlet language(s): German
  • Reported in: Issue 230
  • Countries / regions discussed: Austria, UK, Bulgaria, Poland, US, Lithuania, Russia, Latvia
Anti-Russian Alexei Navalny

DISINFO: Foreign diplomats interfere in internal affairs of Russia


About 20 representatives of the embassies of Western countries such as the United States, Great Britain, Bulgaria, Poland, Latvia, Lithuania and Austria have arrived [to a court hearing]. Diplomats traditionally support their citizens in foreign courts. Even though the West considers Navalny “one of its own,” he is a citizen of the Russian Federation. This is not just interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign state. It is a representation of the unsightly and illegal role of the collective West in its attempts to contain Russia.


Repeated Pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives the West and Alexei Navalny.

Russia opposition politician Alexei Navalny was detained and shortly after that sentenced to prison, following his return to Russia from Germany where he was treated from the poisoning with Novichok-type nerve agent. The European Union has condemned the detention of Alexei Navalny and called for his immediate release.

Court hearings are, as a rule, open to the public. Diplomats have the right, just as any other member of the public, to attend a court hearing. This is a century long, normal part of diplomats’ work. Russia is a member of the Council of Europe (CoE) and bound by the same conventions incl. the European Convention on Human Rights, which, among others, defines Russia's international obligations on human rights.

Contrary to the claim, criticism on the handling of the Navalny case is not tantamount to interfering in Russia’s domestic affairs but a legitimate stance in regard to human rights and the rule of law in the country. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that the charges against Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny are politically motivated and arbitrary and manifestly unreasonable. As a signatory of the European Convention on Human Rights, Russia accepts the jurisdiction of the ECHR and forced to comply with its rulings.

Shortly after Alexei Navalny was sentenced, Russia expelled 3 diplomats from Germany, Sweden and Poland. This move was strongly condemned by the EU.

Pro-Kremlin outlets have attempted to obfuscate the Russian government's role in the attack attributing Navalny's illness to moonshine, psychosomatic stress, overzealous dieting, low blood sugar, a flare-up of an unspecified chronic illness, and psychiatric medication.


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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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