Disinfo: Lithuania is a totalitarian country

Summary

Lithuania is known for uncompromising position concerning all issues, from energy to absolutely wild crimes in the field of human rights. The cases of Paleckis, Mel, and Titov serve as examples. If earlier Lithuania can be considered as an authoritarian country, at present it can be certainly seen as a totalitarian state.

Disproof

This message is aimed to discredit Lithuania by putting an absurd claim about the country's totalitarian political regime, based on examples of three recent criminal cases.

Lithuania is a democratic country which protects the rule of law. The most recent Freedom House report qualifies Lithuania as a democracy with aggregate freedom score of 91 out of 100. "Lithuania is a democracy in which political rights and civil liberties are generally respected," the report says.

In March 2019 Yuriy Mel, a former Soviet tank officer, was convicted for war crimes under Soviet rule. In May 2019, the Klaipėda District Court found Viačeslav Titov, a local councillor, guilty of the defamation of the memory of a deceased person, namely Adolfas Ramanauskas-Vanagas, a leader in Lithuania's anti-Soviet resistance. The fine worth of EUR 12,000 issued to Viačeslav Titov was reduced to EUR 10,000 by the Klaipėda Regional Court in October 2019. An unidentified "network of persons" and Algirdas Paleckis, a Lithuanian politician, are suspected of having collected information for Russia about investigators and judges involved in the landmark January 13 case, as well as other information. Paleckis has been in custody since October 2018.

See earlier Lithuania-related disinformation cases alleging that Russophobic Lithuania plans to tear Belarus away from Russia by dragging it into the Western energy network, that there is no freedom of speech in Lithuania and other Baltic states, and that Lithuania is a typical dying young democracy.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 170
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 24/10/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Lithuania
  • Keywords: January 13, Human rights, Baltic states
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It was clear from the very beginning that Ukraine was not going to fulfill the Minsk agreements

The “Minsk agreements” demonstrated to European partners that Russia did not mind helping Ukraine to somehow survive. But Ukraine itself is not able to use the opportunities.The fact that Ukraine is not going to fulfill the Minsk agreements was clear […] from the very beginning.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative about the Minsk agreements, portraying Ukraine as a primary violator of the cease-fire. See previous cases about the Minsk agreements and the war in Ukraine. Overview of the implementation of the Minsk II agreement shows that both parts failed to fulfill the plan. The analysis of the Atlantic Council shows that the majority of violations can be attributed to Russia-backed armed formations. France and Germany expressed the regret on selective interpretation of the Minsk agreements by Russia. In a joint press conference to the United Nations, the ambassadors of France and Germany stated that there's an urgent need to "a renewed commitment by Russia and all sides to the Minsk Agreements and the Normandy Process.” According to the reports by the OSCE Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, there are violations of the Minsk agreement on both sides of the conflict. The analysis of the Atlantic Council shows that the majority of violations can be attributed to Russia-backed armed formations. The claim that Russia wants to help Ukraine does not present the real situation, since it was Russia that provoked a war in Ukraine. For background see here. See another case claiming that the government sabotaging peace in the Donbas region.

Wherever Russia goes, wars stop

Wherever Russia goes, wars stop.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that Russia is a peaceful country. Since 1991 Russia was involved in several international conflicts, including intervention in neighboring states, such as Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine in 2014.

Many international organisations condemned the Russian occupation of Abkhazia and South Ossetia; e.g. the OSCE statement and European Parliament's declaration.

Neither Turkey, nor the US has any interest in building peace in Syria

About the war. Can you tell me which is the only country interested in (peace), I do not mean the regional players, building peace in Syria? Maybe Turkey? Of course not. The United States? Of course not. Russia. Only the Russian Federation is interested in peace.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Syrian war. In fact, Russia saved a leader, not a nation. There is ample evidence that the Syrian leadership (supported by Russia) is responsible for numerous massacres, bombings and chemical attacks on civilians in Syria. Russian airstrikes on hospitals, water treatment plants and mosques [causing hundreds of civilian deaths] have also been documented. Both militaries have denied the allegation. Amnesty International has also gathered evidence, including photos and video footage, suggesting the Russians have used unguided bombs in densely populated civilian areas, as well as internationally banned deadly cluster munitions. See similar cases here.