Disinfo: PACE manifests double standards

Summary

The report on the freedom of journalists is biased and has become a manifestation of PACE’s double standards. Outrageous violations of journalists’ rights in Estonia and Ukraine remained ignored by the report. During the PACE session, a press conference was organised by Executive Director of Russia Today and Sputnik Estonia’s Chief Editor. However, their speech was not reflected in the report, but an attempt to offend Russia was made.

Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Council of Europe, attempting to undermine the institution, as well as a recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about the West's deliberate anti-Russian activities, Russophobia and double standards. The Council of Europe is an international organisation whose stated aim is to uphold human rights, democracy, and the rule of law in Europe. The Council of Europe is not "anti" any country, nor does the PACE offend anyone. PACE resolutions aim at resolving existing problems and cannot be considered as steps against the country concerned.

During the PACE winter session, the executive director of Russia Today and editor-in-chief of Sputnik Estonia claimed without evidence that there is no freedom of speech in Estonia, but rather total censorship. However, in resolution N2317, the Assembly noted that in fact the Russian Federation should "address the problem of violence against journalists, including murders, physical attacks and threats, arrests, imprisonment, on-line harassment", "prevent police violence against journalists, as has happened during July-August 2019 demonstrations in Moscow" and "review the terms of reference of the Russian federal media regulator, Roskomnadzor, to limit its excessive power in the monitoring and censorship of the media, including on-line media; the blocking of independent media outlets without any warning or explanation, as recently happened to the Fergana news website, is an action amounting to censorship that is incompatible with the freedom of the media".

See similar cases claiming that the West practices double standards when dealing with Russia, that PACE is a propagandistic assembly that deals with Russophobia at all levels, that the Council of Europe is a completely meaningless and absolutely anti-Russian organisation, and that the Council of Europe is Russophobic and rulings from the Strasbourg Court are anti-Russian.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 184
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 03/02/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Estonia
  • Keywords: Council of Europe, Anti-Russian, Freedom of speech, Russophobia
  • Outlet: Sputnik Armenia
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Poland and Lithuania question the status of Russia as a country who won WWII

Particular Western countries try to question the status of Russia as a country, which had won in WWII, and to adjust the history to the present-day political situation. The Polish and Lithuanian parliaments adopted the resolutions on mutual responsibility of the USSR and Nazi Germany for the outbreak of WWII.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism and the Russian attempt to hide the uncomfortable facts of the Soviet history from 1939-1941 (Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and partition of Eastern and Central Europe between Hitler and Stalin; occupation of the Baltic states; Soviet attack at Finland in 1939-1940, etc.).

The resolutions of the Polish and Lithuanian Parliaments regarding WWII do not question the status of Russia as a country, which had won in this war as it is a fact – these resolutions are aimed at the criticism of two totalitarian regimes, which started WWII in 1939.

Drawing attention to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact is a distortion of the truth

The armies of France and the UK counted 115 divisions against 11 divisions of Nazi Germany. Despite this fact, France and the UK did not do anything – they intentionally gave Hitler the possibility to develop his military might. They could have stopped the war, but they did not do it. The same happened in Munich. That is why drawing attention to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact is a mistake and the distortion of the truth – the treason started in Munich and it was continued on the Western Front.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism and an attempt to erode the disastrous historical role of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact by the statements that the USSR was forced to sign this pact; other European countries signed various international agreements with Adolf HitlerMunich Agreement triggered WWII and various historical conspiracies saying that the Western democracies wanted to inspire a war between Nazism and Communism.

The Munich Agreement (September 30, 1938), indeed, permitted the German annexation of the Sudetenland in western Czechoslovakia. The policy of appeasement towards Adolf Hitler was heavily criticised in Europe and proved to be a disastrous move. World War II began in Europe one year later, on 1 September 1939, when Germany invaded Poland.

UK wants to be in a leading position on the anti-Russian issue

After leaving the EU, Great Britain will not stop its anti-Russian policy. On the contrary, UK wants to be in a leading position on the anti-Russian issue.

Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative linking the UK and Russophobia with no evidence provided. Russophobia is often used in pro-Kremlin disinformation as an explanation for anyone blaming Russia for anything. By accusing Western societies of “Russophobia”, pro-Kremlin propaganda outlets downgrade criticism of Kremlin policies and actions to being somehow irrational and not worthy of a serious reply.

Read previous disinformation message stating that Russophobia is an integral part of British foreign policythat After Brexit, the UK will lead a Russophobic camp in Europe,  "Great Britain is the main locomotive of Russophobia in the world", UK uses the Skripal case to become a leader of a new campaign of the West against Russia.