Disinfo: Only Ukraine violates the ceasefire regime in Donbas

Summary

There were tens of “comprehensive” ceasefire agreements concluded since 2015 between the Ukrainian troops and the People’s Police of Donbas. Each of them lasted a maximum of a few days, afterwards the Ukrainian side resumed shelling. And while the command of the republics of Donbas strictly forbids its subordinates to open fire, even in response to shelling by the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the Ukrainian side periodically conducts targeted shelling of the positions of the defenders of Donbas and frontline settlements.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine alleging that Ukraine is sabotaging the Minsk agreements and the ceasefire regimes in Donbas. The OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine reported 8,500 ceasefire violations during the period from 27 January - 9 February. It recorded 26 weapons in violation of their withdrawal lines: three in the Ukrainian government-controlled side and 23 in areas outside governmental control. The Mission observed anti-tank mines on both sides of the contact line. Based on the report of 15 February 2020, the SMM has recorded more than 140 ceasefire violations, most of which took place on the "non-governmental-controlled areas". In many cases, separatists from the self-proclaimed DNR and LNR violated the Minsk agreements, not the Ukrainian side, with the so-called elections organised there in February 2018 as one of the examples. See similar disinformation narratives stating that the government in Kyiv is sabotaging the peace in Donbas and that the Ukrainian side does not abide by the Minsk agreements.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 187
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/02/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Ukraine, DNR, Eastern Ukraine, LNR, Donbas, War in Ukraine
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Armenia initiates a referendum to ratify the Istanbul Convention

The authorities initiated a consitutional referendum to change members of the Constitutional court. This is aimed at ratifying the Istanbul Convention, even though it contradicts the Constitution.

For the Convention to be ratified, the Constitutional Court needs to conclude that it does not contradict Armenia’s Constitution.

With its current staff, the Constitutional Court of Armenia, would never reach such a conclusion. So, it is very important for the authorities to change the members of the Constitutional Court as soon as possible.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative about the Istanbul Convention. The Istanbul Convention (the Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence) is a treaty of the Council of Europe for the creation of a legal framework at pan-European level to protect women against all forms of violence, and prevent, prosecute and eliminate violence against women and domestic violence.

The referendum has nothing to do with the Istanbul Convention. Under the proposed amendments, the Constitutional court’s chairman and six other members appointed by former Armenian governments would be replaced by other judges to be confirmed by the current parliament. The chairman and members of the CC are accused of having remaining links to the “former corrupt regime”.

Ukraine's chances of joining the EU are miserable, economy is destroyed, industry in ruins, millions have left the country

Ukraine’s chances of joining the EU are miserable. Ukrainians are pleased to be among “good company”, but nobody wants to take them into such a company.

If you ask the Ukrainian authorities what they really did to join the European Union, the answer will be very sad. The economy of Ukraine is destroyed, industry is in ruins and the standard of living has fallen to such an extent that millions of Ukrainians have become migrants.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that the European Union is tired of Ukraine and no longer wants to help it and that there is no chance of Ukraine joining the EU. It is also a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative portraying the economic situation of Ukraine as disastrous.

European integration is defined by the Ukrainian authorities as a priority. On 11 February 2020, Prime Minister of Ukraine, Oleksiy Honcharuk, met with EU Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations, Olivér Várhelyi, and discussed priorities for Ukraine-EU bilateral cooperation for 2020.

A small group of EU countries reinforces historical phobias about Russia

There is a small group of countries in the EU that reinforces historical phobias about Russia and constantly calls for Russia to be contained and for sanctions not to be reduced.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russophobia in the EU. EU sanctions against Russia were imposed after illegal actions by the Russian Federation, including the annexation of Crimea, and against persons that have been involved in the violation of Ukraine's territorial integrity. In March 2015, the European Council linked the duration of economic restrictions to the complete implementation of the Minsk agreements. The EU remains ready to ease sanctions when Russia starts contributing actively to the implementation of the Minsk agreements. “Russophobia” is a manipulative defensive line, often used by Russian propaganda to delegitimise any criticism of Russian policies or the state by implying that such criticism derives from an irrational intolerance of the Russian people. Outlets such as RT, Sputnik and Russian national state television use the term to portray almost any foreign criticism of the Kremlin's policies. Read similar disinformation cases alleging that Poland, the Baltic states and Ukraine are Russophobic and anti-Semitic and that Western journalism is dominated by Russophobia and prefers fantasy and story-telling to objective reporting.