Disinfo: Suppression of media freedom is the norm in the Baltic States

Summary

Suppression of media freedom and violation of the rights of national minorities have become a norm in the Baltic States. Extremist parties, movements and groups that spread the ideology of Nazism, racial superiority, discrimination and xenophobia are feeling more and more at ease.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Baltic States. Consistent with the narrative that the West is dominated by fascist/ Nazi groups and ideology. Estonia ranks 11th in the World Press Freedom Index, 2019. Latvia and Lithuania rank 24th and 30th accordingly. Russia currently ranks 149th out of 180 countries, one place down since the last year. Painting the Baltic States as Nazis is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation tactic. See related examples of disinformation cases here, here and here.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 188
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 27/02/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Country: Baltic states
  • Keywords: Censorship, Freedom of speech, Sputnik
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Coronavirus is an artificial virus

Indian scientists have been experimenting with new coronavirus and have discovered that it contains two types of coronavirus – bat and snake, as well as four types of HIV viral infections. In December 2019, we learned about the COVID-19 virus in China. The most interesting is that just a few months before, US President Donald Trump announced that “Unless China pulls itself together, they will be sorely regretting.” Given the findings of Indian scientists, we come to the conclusion that this is an artificial virus.

Disproof

The statement is another example of conspiracy narratives on a plot against China, profitable to the US. See more examples of groundless statements about the coronavirus here.

A preprint scientific manuscript published Jan. 31 by a group of Indian researchers suggested that the virus, known as COVID-19, may have been deliberately engineered using the HIV. The findings, which fed conspiracy theories that the new virus might be a bioweapon, have sparked a huge controversy. The authors withdrew the paper on Feb. 2 from the bioRxiv preprint server.

The Baltic states, Ukraine and Poland revise history for political revenge against Russia

The main initiators of historical revisionism and denial of truth about the liberation of their territory are the Baltic States, Ukraine and Poland. It is clear that these countries pursue not military, but political revanchism. The current position of these countries (denial of the role of the USSR in WWII, denial of the role of the Red Army in the destruction of Nazis) fuels to their confrontation with Russia.

Disproof

This message is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism – it accuses the Baltic states, Ukraine and Poland in “falsification and re-writing” of their history.

The official position of Poland, Ukraine and the Baltic states regarding WWII is based on facts, shared by the predominant majority of historians. Both Nazi Germany and the Stalinist USSR were harsh totalitarian regimes, which directly caused the deaths of tens of millions of people. Secondly, these two regimes are mutually responsible for the outbreak of WWII.

MH17 investigation is falling apart

As the [MH17] trial begins, the case literally starts falling apart before our eyes.

For more than 5 years now the world government has been trying to find any kind of excuse to blame Russia for the catastrophe.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative aiming to discredit the International Joint Investigation (JIT) into the downing of flight MH17.

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) - which is comprised of the Dutch Public Prosecution Service officials and the Dutch police, along with police and criminal justice authorities from Australia, Belgium, Malaysia and Ukraine - has concluded that flight MH17 was shot down on 17 July 2014 by a missile of the 9M38 series, launched by a BUK-TELAR, from farmland in the vicinity of Pervomaiskiy. At that time, the area was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. The BUK-TELAR was brought in from the territory of the Russian Federation and subsequently, after having shot down flight MH17, was taken back to the Russian Federation. The Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team (JIT) has concluded that the BUK-TELAR used to down MH17 originates from the 53rd Anti Aircraft Missile brigade, a unit of the Russian army from Kursk in the Russian Federation.