Disinfo: OSCE has repeatedly stated that there is no Russian army in LDNR

Summary

For many years, Kyiv officials have argued that Ukrainian punishers are allegedly fighting in Donbas with Russia. The civil conflict was presented as “Russian aggression”, although even the OSCE has repeatedly stated that there is no Russian army in the LPR and DPR.

Disproof

This narrative claims the war in Ukraine is a civil war and Russia has nothing to do with it, consistent with common pro-Kremlin disinformation about the war in Ukraine.

OSCE representatives have stated about the presence of the Russian military in Donbas and personal communication with them. For example, a representative of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe in Ukraine Alexander Hug said in an interview with Foreign Policy in October 2018 that the OSCE mission had identified people with Russian insignia in Donbas, as well as prisoners who claimed to be servicemen of Russian Armed Forces.

There is extensive evidence of active Russian soldiers taking part in fighting in Donbas. Most of the Russians captured have already been exchanged. Amid heavy battles in 2014 and 2015, the Ukrainian army captured dozens of active Russian servicemen in Donbas. For instance, on 24 August 2014, amid the Battle of Ilovaisk, the 51st brigade captured 10 Russian paratroopers from the 331st parachute infantry regiment of the 98th Guards Airborne regiment based in Russian city Kostroma. Later, Russia claimed that the soldiers simply got lost on Ukrainian territory. On 31 August Ukraine and Russia exchanged captured troops.

On 15 May 2015, the Ukrainian army captured two Russian GRU soldiers – Capt. Yevgeniy Yerofeev and Sgt. Aleksandr Aleksandrov. A year later they were exchanged for First Lieutenant Nadiya Savchenko who had been captured near Luhansk in June 2014 and then transported to Russia.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 226
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 21/12/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Eastern Ukraine, War in Ukraine, Donbas, OSCE

Disclaimer

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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