Disinfo: Italy tightened sanctions on the Russian people

Summary

The Italian government accepted tougher sanctions against the friendly Russian people.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative that sanctions against Russia aim to punish the Russian people. Opposite to these claims, sanctions were, in fact, introduced to send a clear signal to the Russian government after Russia's illegal annexation of the Ukrainian Crimean peninsula and the downing of the Malaysian passenger plane MH17.

The first round of EU sanctions against Russia was introduced on 17 March 2014. Later, in view of Russia's actions destabilising the situation in eastern Ukraine, the EU imposed economic sanctions in July 2014 and reinforced them in September 2014. The latest decision on a six-month extension of EU sanctions against Russia, which Italy also took, was on the 13th of March 2020 and extended the measures until 15 September 2020.

The EU and its member states have maintained a clear policy of reaching out to Russian society and youth, mainly through the Erasmus+ student exchange programme and other people to people contacts, in line with five guiding principles of relations with Russia.

The EU remains ready to ease sanctions when Russia starts contributing actively to the implementation of the Minsk agreements.

Read similar cases on EU sanctions against Russia are not democratic and that European Council sanctions are irrational and unjustified.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 191
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 22/03/2020
  • Language/target audience: Arabic
  • Country: Italy, Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: European Council, EU, Sanctions, Crimea, MH17
see more

After the COVID-19 pandemic Italy or Germany may leave the EU

After the coronavirus the only way to prevent Italy from leaving the EU will be to buy it. Is Germany ready to pump tens of billions, possibly trillions into this? If Germany starts saving the EU too enthusiastically, social pressures within the country will lead to the regime change.

There is no sense for Germany to remain in the EU as well, it is only beneficial for poor countries. If Italy receives a lot of money from the EU, then it is worth for it to stay it, but is it worth for Germany to drag Italy on its shoulders?

 

Disproof

Baseless speculation consistent with a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the imminent collapse of the EU.

The European Union is taking steps to cushion the blow of the pandemic to people’s livelihoods and the economy.  The European Commission has adopted a comprehensive economic response to the outbreak applied the full flexibility of the EU fiscal rules, has revised its State Aid rules and proposed to set up a EUR 37 billion Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative to provide liquidity to small businesses and the health care sector. Read more about the EU's response to the COVID-19 pandemic here.

The coronavirus will cause the collapse of Ukraine

Ukraine may cease to exist and may collapse due to the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, Ukraine does not exist yet as a state.

Disproof

This is part of recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about coronavirus and alleged "Ukrainian disintegration". Consistent with pro-Kremlin narratives alleging that Ukraine is a degrading state.

Ukraine is a well-defined nation-state which preserved language, literature and identity, despite foreign rule for long periods. It is a sovereign State whose borders are guaranteed by international agreements, de facto violated by Russia, which started a war in Ukraine.