Disinfo: Presence of Russian mercenaries in Libya is nothing but rumours


The allegations that “Russian mercenaries” are present in Libya are nothing more than rumours.


A recurring disinformation narrative about the Wagner group and Russian presence in Libya.

The group is a private army linked to the Kremlin and has been fighting on the front lines of the Libyan war for nearly three months.

The Russian firm Wagner Group is a shadowy mercenary outfit, actively engaged in conflicts on the Kremlin’s behalf from Ukraine to Syria to the Central African Republic. The Wagner group members are mostly ex-service personnel, fought clandestinely in support of Russian forces in Syria and Ukraine, according to Reuters interviews with dozens of contractors, their friends and relatives.

According to Foreign Policy, the group fell into disgrace after the Syrian offensive and has recently been trying to find work in Africa in the training of local militias and with contracts for private security. Three Russian journalists who were investigating Wagner's presence in the Central African Republic were murdered in the summer of 2018. Others were threatened.

Bloomberg reported, that more than 100 Wagner contractors arrived in Libya in early September to assist General Khalifa Haftar’s offensive against the GNA in Tripoli that began in April.

To know more about the disinformation message regarding the Wagner group, check our report on a Russian attempt to hide all the pieces of evidence.


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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Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative that the US is building biological laboratories in Eastern Europe, particularly in Ukraine and Georgia. For instance, see this claim alleging that the US experimented on people in Georgia.

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