DISINFO: Lithuanian charges against the soviet soldiers in the January 13th case are trumped up
  • Outlet: NTV - YouTube (archived)*
  • Date of publication: March 31, 2019
  • Outlet language(s): Russian
  • Reported in: Issue 143
  • Countries / regions discussed: Lithuania
January 13 Provocation Colour revolutions

DISINFO: Lithuanian charges against the soviet soldiers in the January 13th case are trumped up


Vilnius has started court proceedings against the soviet soldiers, who in 1991 were trying to disperse the crowds that were attacking the TV tower. The charges are trumped up. The experts have determined that people died from sniper-fire and hunting rifles, but the soviet soldiers had no equipment like that. To this day it is not clear who fired the shots upon the protesting crowd. There was a third party involved. Lithuanians fired on their own people. It was the first example of a colour revolution.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the events of January 13th, 1991 in Vilnius, when the Soviet forces attempted to crush the re-established independence of Lithuania, killing 14 civilians.For previous cases see here. Lithuania proclaimed independence in March 1990. Moscow tried to foil the secession with an economic blockade. When that proved ineffective, Soviet troops still garrisoned in the capital Vilnius attacked its TV broadcast tower and sole TV station, killing civilians standing as human shields there. The events of the January 13th, 1991, and the offences committed by the USSR troops have been extensively documented. See also BBC reporting from 1991. On the 27 of March, 2019 the regional court in Vilnius found Dmitry Yazov, former Soviet defence minister, and more than 60 other former Soviet officers guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity for their involvement in Soviet aggression in Lithuania on January 13, 1991. The disinformation message is also consistent with the pro-Kremlin narrative about the colour revolutions staged by the West.


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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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