Disinfo: Notre Dame belongs to Russia, as France has denounced the European Christian values


Notre Dame belongs to us, Russians. France helped the Nazis to gain power in Ukraine. So “Notre Dame is ours” as Russians are the last to carry of European values. The Europeans themselves, including the French, have denounced and betrayed these values.


Notre Dame belongs to the people of France, their history and culture. This is a recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about moral decline of Europe, while suggesting Russian superiority. See more pro-Kremlin disinformation cases about the Notre Dame fire in Paris here.


  • Reported in: Issue 145
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 16/04/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: France, Russia
  • Keywords: Notre Dame, Russian superiority, European values
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Disinfo: French journalist: "Zelenskiy impresses Macron"

A French journalist says that during his trip to Paris, Volodomyr Zelenskiy, the frontrunner in Ukraine’s presidential race, impressed Emmanuel Macron, pointing out similarities between the two men.


This is a false quote, the words of the "French journalist" are fabricated. On April 12th, Ukrainian comedian and presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky and French president Emmanuel Macron indeed met in Paris. But Elise.com.ua falsely attributes this quote to French journalist Stephane Siohan, who was in fact first quoted by the Ukrainian website Strana.ua. Stephane Siohan works for Le Figaro, Le Temps and Le Soir in Kyiv. On his Facebook page, he mentions that he never spoke to Strana.ua.

“No, I never gave an interview on Strana.ua website about Zelensky. If you read a quote with my name, then this is a fake. I have never talked to Strana.ua and usually do not give interviews about the elections I work on. This is a principle. Especially in Ukraine”.

Strana.ua used Siohan's name and later changed it to “Lucas Talarn”. Google search still shows the previous version of the article on Strana.ua. Other websites still have the same quote with Stephane's name. Stephane told EUvsDisinfo:

“There are many sites which relay the info that I have given an interview to Strana.ua, but strangely Strana publishes an article with the name of an unknown journalist who doesn’t work in Ukraine.”

Disinfo: Frequent fires occur in French churches alongside acts of vandalism, the authorities and media minimise them

France has been hit with a string of fires at Catholic churches, some of which occurred alongside acts of vandalism. Paris’ second largest church, Saint-Sulpice, burst into flames on March 17, the fire damaging doors and stained glass windows. Police later reported that the incident had not been accidental. The story of Saint-Sulpice does not appear to be updated almost a month later suggesting that a deliberate attack of one of Paris’ largest churches was not that newsworthy. The images of flames of Saint-Sulpice church are one example of the violence committed against Catholics. Also at Saint-Alain Cathedral in Lavaur, statues and crosses were smashed and an altar cloth was burned in February. Don’t jump to conclusions before the facts come out, but keep in mind that churches have been burned across France for the last few months. Anti-Christian attacks have sharply risen in France since the beginning of 2019. It’s unclear who is carrying out those attacks or why they did take place. But the real concern is why the French government and media generally underplay them. The true scale is still unknown.


No evidence given that the French government or media abandoned the stories of fires in churches. On the contrary, the investigation on Saint-Sulpice's church fire led to the conclusion that the fire started from a pile of clothes and "clothes don't ignite by themselves". The pile of clothes belonged to a homeless person and it was probably the result of a dispute between other homeless people. In the case of Saint-Alain Cathedral in Lavaur, located 300 meters away from a school, teenagers who allegedly burnt the altar cloth and committed other acts of vandalism were incriminated using video surveillance data. The presence of cakes in a confessional and the twisted arm of Christ in the form of dab (a popular dance among teenagers) suggest that the authors were more likely to look for troubled teens than religious fanatics, summarizes La Depeche. Both accidents appear unlikely to be hate-acts against Catholics. No other recent fires in French churches were reported. The French ministry of the Interior released statistics in which graffiti tags on Church walls were listed as an act of vandalism, regardless of their size, concluding that such cases occur up to 2,9 a day, reminds Liberation. The figure has remained stable over the past years. The government does not downplay the number of accidents or hide their true number, preferring to speak about minorities' rights, as RT suggests.

Disinfo: The Guardian is controlled by MI6

The UK newspaper The Guardian is controlled by the UK Secret Intelligence Service (MI6). Multiple reporters working for the outlet are MI6 operatives. Although the newspaper originally published some of the Wikileaks documents, it subsequently agreed to destroy all of the leaked data in front of MI6 agents.


Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative casting Western media outlets as subservient to political/military/security elites of their respective states. The Guardian is formally owned by a non-profit limited company established specifically to fund the outlet and, simultaneously, guarantee the independence of its staff. Annual reports are published to ensure the transparency of the paper's finances and its adherence to professional standards. The story confuses the unspecified "Wikileaks documents" with the Snowden files, which The Guardian actually obtained in 2013 and used in its coverage of the NSA surveillance scandal. Faced with legal action and prospect of closure in response to the reports, the paper agreed to destroy the storage devices containing the data, and did so in the presence of two GCHQ technicians -- the MI6 was never involved at any stage of the process. The UK Government was informed that multiple copies of the files existed and that the destruction of the UK-based devices, according to then-chief editor Alan Rusbridger, "wouldn't be achieving anything." The paper continued to cover the surveillance scandal, including a story on secret NSA-GCHQ cooperation published 12 days after the destruction of the Snowden files.