Disinfo: The incident in the Kerch Strait was a planned provocation by Poroshenko


The incident in the Kerch Strait was a planned provocation by (Petro) Poroshenko.

The former president Poroshenko brought about this provocation purposefully in the course of the election campaign. He knew that the voters in the east and south of the country would not support him, and used this provocation to aggravate the situation, to introduce the state of emergency. He either wanted to introduce the state of emergency throughout the country or perhaps to postpone the elections. They wanted to keep power at all costs.


No evidence given. Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on Ukraine and Azov Sea saying that Petro Poroshenko instigated the provocation in Kerch Strait to extend his power.

On November 25, border patrol boats belonging to Russia’s FSB security service seized two small Ukrainian armoured artillery vessels and their crews after shooting at them, wounding several Ukrainian servicemen. Russia argued that they were in Russian waters. However, a bilateral treaty between Russia and Ukraine, signed in 2003 and ratified by Russia in 2004 governs the use of the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov. The agreement states this stretch to be the “internal waters” of both Russia and Ukraine.

On May 25, 2019, the United Nations Tribunal for the Law of the Sea ordered Russia to immediately release Ukrainian sailors and allow them to return to Ukraine. The EU has also urged Russia to release the captured crew.

The construction of the Kerch Bridge took place without Ukraine's consent and constitutes a violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. It has led, in parallel with the militarisation of the Azov Sea, to tougher controls on naval traffic in the strait. The European Union stated that it expects Russia to stop the inspections.

For more disinformation cases on the Kerch incident see here, here and here.


  • Reported in: Issue 158
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 09/07/2019
  • Language/target audience: German
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Azov sea, Kerch, Provocation, War in Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko
  • Outlet: Sputnik Deutschland
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The disinformation message is also consistent with pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about Russophobia, Western attempts to sever relations between Russia and Georgia, and protests as a part of hybrid war against Russia.

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Consistent with multiple pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about the US and its global role. 

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The message misrepresents the outcome of EU-Ukraine economic cooperation. During 2016-2018, Ukraine increased its export to the EU from EUR 13.2b to EUR 18b. Read more about Ukraine-EU economic cooperation here.