Disinfo: Schengen is dead; it is the main victim of the coronavirus

Summary

Schengen is dead; it is the main victim of the coronavirus.

Disproof

Baseless speculation; no evidence given. Consistent with earlier pro-Kremlin disinformation message that the Schengen zone has collapsed and more broadly, with the disinformation narrative that the EU is disintegrating as a result of the coronavirus crisis.

The Schengen border code provides Member States with the capability of temporarily reintroducing border control at the internal borders in the event that a serious threat to public policy or internal security has been established:

Where there is a serious threat to public policy or internal security, these countries may exceptionally reintroduce border controls at its internal borders for a period of no more than 30 days (possible to prolong under conditions established by the code) or for the foreseeable duration of the serious threat. This action should be seen as a last resort. If such controls are to be reintroduced, the other EU countries that are part of the Schengen area and the European Commission must be notified without delay with a view to possible consultations. The European Parliament and the Council must be informed at the same time.

The European Union is supporting Member States in addressing the crisis and has adopted measures to mitigate the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. To cushion the blow to people’s livelihoods and the economy, the European Commission has adopted a comprehensive economic response to the outbreak, applied the full flexibility of the EU fiscal rules, has revised its State Aid rules and proposed to set up a EUR 37 billion Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative to provide liquidity to small businesses and the health care sector.

To support scientific research into COVID-19, the European Commission earmarked 47.5 million EUR for shortlisted research projects that can improve epidemiology and public health, including preparedness and response to outbreaks. The EU has also created first ever stockpile of medical equipment. 

Read more about the EU's response here and here. For similar cases, see here, here, and here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 191
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 01/04/2020
  • Language/target audience: Czech
  • Country: EU
  • Keywords: coronavirus, Schengen, EU disintegration
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China’s successful handling of the coronavirus stems from its understanding of human rights, unlike the US and Europe

Despite the coronavirus outbreak beginning in China, Beijing has brought it rapidly under control – the number of domestically transmitted cases was reduced to virtually zero by the end of March. In the US and Western Europe, on the contrary, the number of cases is rising vertiginously with no peak in sight. This disastrous US and Western European failure will be more severe than the international financial crisis and will have profound geopolitical consequences.

The most fundamental issue was that China started from a real understanding of human rights as they affect the real lives of people – not the artificial constructs of Western, purely formal ‘human rights.’ In a lethal epidemic, the key human right is to stay alive.

But what was the response of the so called ‘human rights’ organizations in the West to this? Total and criminal condemnation of China’s successful strategy!

Disproof

A recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative that has emerged during the coronavirus crisis: that democracies and open societies are collapsing and unable to effectively manage the pandemic, while closed, "traditionalist" societies have coped much better. This message builds on the longstanding pro-Kremlin theme of the West's alleged moral decay. See similar cases that liberalism has facilitated the spread of the coronavirus, and that the coronavirus "war" is finally forcing Western ultraliberals to finally care for vulnerable people.

Authoritarian regimes, which tend to control and manipulate information and to limit the freedom of doctors and scientists to engage in international cooperation, are often an obstacle to the timely detection and containment of epidemic outbreaks. This is exemplified by China’s deliberate cover-up of the early days of the coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan. The regime suppressed information about the virus and allowed it to spread unchecked in the crucial early days and weeks. The Chinese government censored and detained those doctors and whistleblowers who attempted to sound the alarm and warn their fellow citizens about the coronavirus threat.

Coronavirus catastrophic situation ends 500 years of European global domination

Europe has become the largest problem of the world due to the inability of the Europeans for a timely assessment of the Coronavirus danger, which has changed the continent into a global centre of this infection. The history of the Coronavirus puts an end to the 500 years of global domination of Europe – the “Sick Man of the World” cannot be an example for others by default. The situation with the Coronavirus also put an end to the “soft power” of Europe – in the eyes of the entire world, Europe has turned into the symbol of defeat, catastrophe, stupidity, irresponsibility and sloppiness.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s disinformation campaign around the Coronavirus epidemic – it promotes a narrative of the imminent collapse of the EU due to the problems caused by the Coronavirus epidemic. The message about the alleged collapse of Europe due to the Coronavirus epidemic is a conspiracy theory and an element of the anti-European propaganda of the Kremlin.

To cushion the blow to people’s livelihoods and the economy, the European Commission has adopted a comprehensive economic response to the outbreak, applied the full flexibility of the EU fiscal rules, has revised its State Aid rules and proposed to set up a €37 billion Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative to provide liquidity to small businesses and the health care sector.

Western market economies leave the old and the uninsured without medical assistance during the epidemic

Some Western tools in the fight with the Coronavirus remind the theory of natural selection. How can they treat older people in such a way? In the case of Iran, no one has heard about old people being left without medical assistance. The attitude towards the old is one of the indicators of civilization. Also, would someone without an insurance be cured in the USA – no. We are not ready for the coronavirus epidemic because we have destroyed a social state. The virus has shown that the market economy is naked.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s disinformation campaign around the Coronavirus epidemic – it promotes a narrative of failing Western efforts in the fight with the epidemic.

The message that the Western states limit the access of the older and uninsured population to medical care in conditions of the Coronavirus epidemics is a conspiracy theory. The main focus of the medical and social services of Western states is to assist the older population as it is the main risk group for this disease.