Disinfo: Rejection of Sputnik V is a planned operation to kill Ukrainians

Summary

The rejection of purchasing the Russian COVID-19 vaccine Sputnik V by Ukrainian authorities is a planned operation to kill Ukrainians.

Disproof

This is a pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Sputnik V vaccine as well as Ukraine.

In general, the Sputnik V vaccine has been met with international skepticism and even the World Health Organisation expressed some reservations, especially as it hasn’t completed large trials to test the vaccine’s safety and efficacy. Rolling out an inadequately vetted vaccine could endanger people who receive it.

The Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy was clear when he said:

“If someone has a vaccine for COVID-19, Ukraine will buy it”, and he even pointed out the same argument regarding any vaccine from the EU by stating, "The EU has confirmed that it will help Ukraine get a real vaccine when it appears and when it does not cast doubts from the scientists."

On the same note, the Ukrainian Health Ministry stated that the country is already set to receive a COVID-19 vaccine via the COVAX mechanism, an international initiative launched by the World Health Organisation, the European Commission, and the government of France, to ensure efficient access to COVID-19 vaccines once they are ready.

See similar disinformation cases alleging that ugly commercial interests are behind the criticism of the Russian COVID-19 vaccine, WHO confirms the "Sputnik-V" vaccine is safe and effective, or that Ukraine may buy the Russian vaccine against COVID-19 indirectly through EU.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 225
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 29/12/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: Sputnik V, coronavirus, vaccination
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The real power in Ukraine is the US embassy

The real power in Ukraine is the US embassy. “If they (the US) need to push something, they summon the Ukrainian minister, give him instructions, then make a joint communiqué, then take a photo.”

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine not backed up with evidence, which is often claimed to be under external control from the US.

The US does not control Ukraine. Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are respected by most of the free world, confirmed by resolutions of the United Nations.

The Arab Spring was organised by the West

18 December 2010 is considered to be the starting point of the riots, unrest and uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa collectively referred to as the Arab Spring.

US and transnational foundations for democracy-promotion were operating in many of the countries where the Arab Spring began. Their activists, who had been trained years before, were at the epicentre of events and passed on colour revolution techniques to the local population. These activists had previously developed such techniques in the Commonwealth of Independent States and the Balkans.

But the attempt by the US and the West to reshape the Middle East and impose Western democracy on the region failed. It is important to note that ISIS emerged in 2013 as a result of the Arab Spring.

Disproof

Disinformation about the Arab Spring presented with no evidence. This article’s message is consistent with pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about popular protests around the world allegedly incited and funded by the US and other Western states, including colour revolutions in post-Soviet states, the Arab Spring revolts, Euromaidan in Ukraine, protests in Catalonia and others. This narrative claims that protests, disorders and civil uprisings are never manifestations of popular discontent but are "colour revolutions" directed and funded by Western intelligence services or other Western actors in order to destabilise targeted foreign states and bring about regime change.

When the Arab Spring revolts broke out throughout Northern Africa and the Middle East beginning in 2010-2011, Russian media increasingly spread conspiracy theories portraying the uprisings as nefarious “color revolutions” hatched in the United States. Senior Russia security and military officials claimed that the Arab Spring, which got much of its initial traction through social media such as Facebook and Twitter, was a new subversive methodology designed by Western intelligence services to destabilise societies and bring about regime change, first in the Arab world and subsequently in Russia itself.