Disinfo: Reunification of Russia and Crimea resembles the unification of Germany

Summary

The reunification of Crimea with Russia is the same as the reunification of West and East Germany.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Crimea being a part of Russia. Crimea was illegally annexed by Russia in 2014 after an unrecognised referendum. The United Nations did not recognise the annexation. In March 2014, the UN General Assembly voted in favour of a resolution affirming the “territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders.” The UN resolution also "underscores that the referendum having no validity” and calls upon all States and international organisations not to recognise or to imply the recognition of Russia's annexation. In 2016, UN General Assembly reaffirmed non-recognition of the annexation and condemned “the temporary occupation of part of the territory of Ukraine—the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.” The UN recognised that Russia is an occupying power in Crimea. NATO and the EU also did not recognise the annexation. The European Union strongly condemns annexation of Crimea as violating international law principles, enshrined in the UN Charter, namely that the territory of a State cannot be acquired by another State resulting from the threat or use of force. Russia’s actions also violated the Helsinki Final Act which calls on the States to recognise inviolability of frontiers and territorial integrity. Unlike the reunification of Germany, by annexing Crimea Russia violated Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. Its actions violate the UN Charter, the Belavezha Accords, the Helsinki Accords, the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances and the Treaty on friendship, cooperation and partnership between the Russian Federation and Ukraine. The Budapest Memorandum clearly states that Russia guarantees Ukrainian sovereignty, territorial integrity and recognises Crimea as an inherent part of Ukraine. These guarantees were further stated in the 1997 Friendship Treaty. By signing the Budapest Memorandum in 1994, Russia together with the United States and the United Kingdom reaffirmed their obligation to refrain from the use of force against the territorial integrity of political independence of Ukraine.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 141
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 14/03/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: Ukraine, illegal annexation, Ukrainian disintegration, Russian expansionism, Ukrainian statehood, Crimea
see more

US Senate: no ties between Donald Trump and Moscow

In February, the US Senate announced the absence of “ties” between the American leader Donald Trump and Moscow. The Commission responsible for the investigation could not reveal any facts or evidence of the alleged collusion of Donald Trump’s campaign headquarters with Russia in 2016.

Disproof

This statement is a recurring Kremlin narrative that was already debunked. RT, once again, used claims, not supported by the CBS report. More disinformation cases on Russian interference in US election here.

Ukraine has already done everything possible to fence Crimea off

Despite the declared policy of the Crimea return, Ukraine has done everything possible to “cut off” the peninsula. The government of Ukraine took all steps to fence off Crimea. Among them are the blockade of electricity, water supplies the complication of bureaucratic procedures to stop moving people there and the delivery of goods to the peninsula from the Kherson region.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine and Crimea. According to the UN resolution of December 19, 2016, Russia was recognised as the Occupying Power, while Crimea was recognised as the temporarily occupied territory. The 1949 Geneva Convention on the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War clearly describes the obligation of the Occupying Power. Articles 55-60 say that the occupying state has to provide products and hygiene items, sanitary materials and everything necessary to hold the religious services. The convention also states that such a state is obliged to provide the population of occupied territory by the rest of necessary goods. According to Resolution No. 367 by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, the Procedure for entering the temporarily occupied territory and leaving it was approved. According to the Resolution, every citizen of Ukraine, who has the documents confirming his citizenship, can get into the occupied territory. The exception applies only to citizens who have not reached the age of 16 years. In this case, a passport of a citizen of Ukraine or a passport for travelling abroad, or a travel document for a child has to be shown. See here for the EU statement on the fifth anniversary of Crimea annexation.

Ukraine is under external control

No one doubts that Ukraine is under foreign control. The current government has handed over its sovereignty to the West [the EU and the United States]. Now, they decide what reforms we should have, who should be our friends, what are our priorities. At the same time, they do not help us to build a strong, independent state, they use Ukraine in their own interests.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine and Ukrainian statehood. Ukraine is a sovereign state. EU and US are not controlling Ukraine. Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are respected by most of the free world but violated by Russia. Ukraine is a priority partner for the EU. In June 2014, EU and Ukraine signed An Association Agreement, including a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), which promotes deeper political ties, stronger economic links and the respect for common values. Find more about EU - Ukraine relations. The relations between the US and Ukraine are bilateral relations between two independent countries. The US recognised Ukraine as an independent state on December 25, 1991. U.S. policy is centred on realising and strengthening a stable, democratic, prosperous, and free Ukraine more closely integrated into Europe and Euro-Atlantic structures. Democratic elections were held in Ukraine in 2014 and recognised by the world community. Consult more cases on Ukraine are here.