Disinfo: Civilians in the Finnish concentration camps in Carelia are victims of genocide


Civilians in the Finnish concentration camps in Russia’s Carelia during WWII are victims of genocide and should ask for a compensation from Finnish authorities.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation message focusing on Finland and Russia's Karelia during the WWII. This time the topic peaked on pro-Kremlin media's agenda in October 2019 after Russia's Security Service FSB released "secret documents" about the conditions in the Finnish camps.

The researchers have studied the treatment of civilians detained in the Finnish camps established in the Finnish-occupied Soviet Karelia in WWII, and nothing suggests Finns aimed at a genocide of Russians or Slavic nations. The word genocide is frequently used in pro-Kremlin disinformation, but it seldom corresponds to the actual definition of a genocide.

Recently, the emphasis of the disinformation campaign has been on Sandarmokh, where 7000-9000 victims of Stalin's terror were executed in the Republic of Karelia, Russia, 1937-1938. Hundreds of monuments have been erected in Sandarmokh to commemorate the victims.

To distract audiences from discussing Stalin's era repressions, beginning 2016, a disinformation message started being spread that among the dead were Soviet prisoners of war shot by invading Finns during 1941-44. There is no evidence to support the claim. Read the full debunk for Sandarmokh here.




  • Reported in: Issue170
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 29/10/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: USSR, Russia, Finland
  • Keywords: Karelia, Genocide


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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