Disinfo: Russophobia in Ukraine has been cultivated for many years


The Russophobia virus in Ukraine has appeared not today, not yesterday, and even not the day before yesterday. It was brought to Ukraine artificially a long time ago. It was cultivated, at first slowly, but then more actively.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that Ukraine is a Russophobic country with Russophobia sentiments cultivated by the West.

There is no evidence of this. In fact, Ukraine is not a Russophobic country as is often claimed by the Kremlin media. It had to react to Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the act of aggression by the Russian armed forces in Donbas. It did not ban the Russian language, as is often claimed by the Kremlin, nor did it ban contact between Ukrainians and Russians.


  • Reported in: Issue 160
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 09/08/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Anti-Russian, Russophobia


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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Only two EU countries opposed the issue of Russian passports in the Donbas

Lithuania and Estonia are the only countries in the European Union that have opposed the issue of Russian passports by the Kremlin in Donbas.


This Kremlin narrative is not backed up with evidence. Russian President Vladimir Putin previously signed a decree on simplified citizenship for residents of the occupied territories of Ukraine. In response, Kуiv stated that the Kremlin is, unprecedentedly, interfering in the country's internal affairs and is preparing for the next phase of aggression against Ukraine.

Contrary to statements by the Russian media about the EU’s “indifference” to this issue, Ukraine’s international partners immediately responded to this development. During the June 2019 EU summit, EU states expressed their support for Kуiv and collectively condemned Russia’s actions. On top, Estonia has already refused to recognise the Russian passports of Donbas residents and France also stated that the decision to grant citizenship to the inhabitants of the occupied territories is contrary to peace agreements.

NATO planned to turn Crimea into its military base

NATO admitted that it intended to turn the annexed Crimea into its huge naval base. The North Atlantic Alliance chatted about how the future of the peninsula would have developed if Crimea had not become part of Russia.


The mythical encroachments of NATO countries on the Ukrainian peninsula are the most common narrative from Russian media. The Kremlin justifies the annexation of the peninsula with these “facts about the evil NATO”. Although NATO has repeatedly emphasised that the North Atlantic Alliance did not have any views on the ports of Crimea before it was annexed.

Speaking at the Centre for Strategic Studies at Queen Victoria University in New Zealand on August 5, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg did address the Crimean issue. However, Stoltenberg spoke of Crimea not in the context of the "NATO plans for militarising" the peninsula, but as one of the main modern threats to the world order that developed after the end of World War II.