Poverty in UK comparable to Sub-Saharan Africa, UN says

Summary

The UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights has compared the level of poverty in the United Kingdom to that found in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Disproof

False, recurring pro-Kremlin narrative on the decaying Western countries.

In his report published in November 2018, Special Rapporteur Philip Alston does identify poverty as a distinct concern for the United Kingdom. The 24-page document, however, contains no reference - let alone a comparison - to sub-Saharan Africa, where more than a quarter of the population faces starvation at any given moment.

RT's fabrication might be based on the following remarks, cited by The New York Times: “When you think of the special rapporteurs on extreme poverty and human rights, you expect them to be visiting sub-Saharan Africa or Haiti. You don’t expect them to be visiting the U.K.”

The comment does not compare poverty in the UK and elsewhere, it predates the UN report, and it was not made by Philip Alston, but by an expert from the University of Bristol.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 149
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 08/05/2019
  • Language/target audience: English
  • Country: UK
  • Keywords: United Nations, Africa, The West
  • Outlet: RT
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Disproof

The story advances the recurring pro-Kremlin narratives on the Skripal poisoning and Western Russophobia.

The proposed amendments to House of Lords rules, which would require peers to disclose their financial links to Russian entities, is not timed to any specific event. It is part of a two-pronged initiative designed to limit undue financial and political influence of foreign governments.

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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.

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Disproof

This report comes after Arsenal and Chelsea fans were apparently warned they could be a target for terror attacks in Azerbaijan. The Premier League sides will compete in the Europa League final in the capital city of Baku on May 29. But British media reports wrote about a ‘likely’ attack.

This has been taken out of context, as the UK government responded, explaining this advice is not new: "We did not issue a new warning on the threat from terrorism in Azerbaijan. We issued an update to our Azerbaijan travel advice on 1 May to remove advice on travelling through Istanbul. It noted that there are consultative pages on every country for British people travelling abroad: “Each travel advice country page has a dedicated section with information on our assessment of the threat from terrorism in that country. This is to ensure we fulfil our duty of care to British nationals and is under constant review. Our assessment of the threat from terrorism in Azerbaijan has not changed.”