Disinfo: Foreigners who join the Ukrainian army are criminals and Russia is not supposed to comply with Geneva convention

Summary

Foreign volunteers will come up against criminal questions because there is the International Convention against the recruitment, use, financing and instruction of mercenaries.

Foreign mercenaries are not volunteers. They are not lawful combatants and are not covered by the Geneva Convention. The real volunteers are the French Normandie-Neman regiment, the 1st and 2nd armies of the Polish Army, who participated with us in the Berlin operation in 1945, the 1st Czechoslovak Army Corps, who fought shoulder to shoulder with the Red Army during the Great Patriotic War war. We will always remember their selfless help.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that foreigners fighting for Ukraine are mercenaries and should not be protected under the Geneva Conventions, while on the contrary people fighting against Ukraine are volunteers and should be protected if taken prisoners.

Ukraine called on experienced foreign nationals to join its foreign legion, whose members are regular soldiers of the Ukrainian army and not mercenaries.

As for the Genva conventions protection on POW, as Ilya Nuzov summarises it on the blog of the European Journal of International Law, the nationality of the soldier is not an issue:

"Combatants are members of the armed forces of a party to the conflict or volunteers corps incorporated therein. According to the ICRC Commentary to Article 4, the requirement for membership in the armed forces, or the incorporation of the volunteer corps, is a matter of domestic regulation. But the incorporated unit must be a professional fighting force, fulfilling the criteria spelled out in Article 4A(2) of GC III, and be subordinate to the regular army command. The fact that an individual is a national of a third State and not a national of the armed forces in which they are serving is widely considered to be irrelevant when it comes to determining combatant or POW status."

It is not an unusual practice since other countries also offer foreigners the opportunity to join the foreign legion without being mercenaries, as in the case of the French Légion étrangère.

Reuters listed some unclear legal issues in some countries, but the practice is usually legal, as La libre Belgique or Le Figaro explain.

At the same time, according to TASS citing Denis Pushilin's decree No.114, the seperatist "republic" Donetsk Peoples Republic just invited foreigners to join their armed formation.

Read also related cases of disinformation: Kyiv ordered Azov Nazis to shoot surrendering Ukrainian soldiers, US transfered jihadist groups in Eastern Ukraine to prepare a provocation against Russia.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 296
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 21/06/2022
  • Article language(s) French, Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Russia, France, Ukraine
  • Keywords: war crimes, War in Ukraine, Invasion of Ukraine, Foreign mercenaries
see more

Disinfo: Aspirations for the EU membership turned Ukraine into a slave market and brought degradation

On the way to the coveted [EU] membership [Ukraine] the richest republic of the USSR lost all its science and industry, fell in love with all high technologies, including military and space, lost almost all qualified specialists - from doctors to engineers, from university professors to rocket scientists.

[...]

The EU supported the total de-industrialization of Ukraine with all its might, at the same time vacuuming all the valuable Ukrainian personnel from young beautiful girls to elderly scientists. Production in Ukraine was destroyed, the country fell into poverty and turned, in fact, into a slave market.

Parallel to impoverishment, there was a civilizational degradation. Urban culture was replaced by rural savages. Today we can see the results of this in full scale - fascism, Satanism, some stupid mass rituals of inflicting damage on Russia and Putin personally. A disgrace, in a word.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the EU-Ukraine relations, advancing disinformation tropes of threatened values and abandoned Ukraine.

Ukraine is a priority partner for the European Union (EU).

Disinfo: Moldovans protested against the government’s ban on Russian media

After the ban in Moldova on news from Russia, 40,000 protesters took to the streets.

Against the backdrop of unprecedented inflation and rising prices for fuel and energy, the ban was the last straw that overwhelmed the patience of the Moldovans.

Disproof

The article is a deliberate distortion and manipulation of the facts concerning the protest that occured in Moldova.

On June 19, a rally was indeed held in the capital of Moldova, but it was not aimed at protesting the ban on Russian media. The rally participants protested against rising prices and difficult economic conditions in the country, as well as the government’s position regarding Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine. Read the full debunk at Myth Detector (in Russian).

Disinfo: Poland plans to use Belarusian Nazi units to attack Belarusian towns

Belarusian Nazi units, Chechen terrorists, and Ukrainian Nazis have terrorist scenarios in common. The planning of various operations in Belarus – from anti-government rallies to terrorist acts – is made in Warsaw. Poland's goal is to take the power in Belarus by force or at least to start a civil war there, thanks to the Belarusian Nazi bands, consisting of the Belarusian opposition activists, which are currently fighting for Kyiv in Ukraine. They might attack Belarusian towns located close to Belarus-Ukraine border and consequently use civilians as a human shield, just as the Azov regiment did in Mariupol. In this scenario Ukrainian artillery can also shell Belarusian counter-terrorist units.

Disproof

Recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about ‘Nazi Ukraine’ , 'colour revolution' attempt in Belarus, and Polish aggressive imperial ambitions.

The article does not address the fact that Russia has started an unjustified and unprovoked aggression against Ukraine and its people. Instead, it promotes a false 'human shield' claim regarding the Ukrainian military and a conspiracy theory about aggressive Polish plans in Belarus. See similar claims here.