DISINFO: The actions in support of Navalny is an episode in the West’s war against Russia
  • Outlet: riafan.ru (archived)*
  • Date of publication: January 31, 2021
  • Outlet language(s): Russian
  • Reported in: Issue 229
  • Countries / regions discussed: Russia
West Anti-Russian Alexei Navalny Protest

DISINFO: The actions in support of Navalny is an episode in the West’s war against Russia


The illegal manifestations of the supporters of Alexei Navalny is an episode of the large war that the West is waging against Russia.


An unfounded claim presented without evidence. This message is consistent with pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives 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(opens in a new tab). And the West is always an aggressive actor constantly preparing new coups (opens in a new tab)and colour revolutions(opens in a new tab) in post-Soviet states. This narrative has been applied, among others, to the Arab Spring revolts, Euromaidan(opens in a new tab) in Ukraine, protests in Catalonia(opens in a new tab), Venezuela(opens in a new tab), Georgia(opens in a new tab), and Belarus(opens in a new tab).

The 2021 Russian protests(opens in a new tab) began on 23 January 2021 in support of the arrested opposition leader Alexei Navalny and as a reaction to the investigation Putin's Palace(opens in a new tab). The rallies — from Russia’s Far East to central Moscow — came less than a week after Navalny returned from Germany, where he recovered from a nerve agent poisoning in August during a trip to Siberia. Navalny was arrested shortly after stepping off the plane. More than 3,300 people were arrested in protests spanning nearly 70 cities and towns across Russia(opens in a new tab).

The protests in January are not illegal. The Russian constitution grants the citizens the rights to gather and demonstrate. Local authorities have refused to issue permits for the demonstrations, rendering the manifestation a status of un-sanctioned. The EU has condemned the detention of Alexei Navalny and called for his immediate release.

See other similar cases claiming that The neo-liberal forces behind Navalny will intensify their attempts to destroy Russia(opens in a new tab), or that The West is sending Navalny back to Russia to prevent him from becoming irrelevant(opens in a new tab).


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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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