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Polish and Lithuanian mercenaries spotted by Luhansk militias in Eastern Ukraine

Summary of Disinformation

Paramilitary elements from Poland and Lithuania working for a foreign security firm arrived to an area in Eastern Ukraine to train Ukrainian troops in sabotage techniques, according to the spokesperson of the Luhansk militias, Ivan Filiponenko.

Disproof

No evidence given to support this claim. The existence of paramilitary fighters or mercenaries from NATO or US-friendly countries is a recurrent narrative in Russian disinformation since at least 2014, and it prompted a diplomatic protest from Poland back then.

The allegation has been repeatedly debunked in those years, but resurfaces again and again since it is useful to try to discredit the Ukrainian army and the countries that support Kiev efforts for stabilization. Many false incidents have been attributed this ‘ghost army’, from rapes to vendettas against Ukrainian soldiers due to low morale.

See here for other disinformation cases about alleged presence of foreign mercenaries in Eastern Ukraine, from Baltic snipers to snipers from Georgia, female snipers from Poland, and even a whole NATO brigade.

 

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Reported in: Issue 149
Date: 09.05.2019
Language: Spanish, Castilian
Country: Ukraine
Keywords: Ukraine, Eastern Ukraine, War in Ukraine, Donbas, Foreign mercenaries
Outlet where the disinformation appeared: Sputnik Spanish
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