Disinfo: The conflict in Donbas is an internal Ukrainian problem

Summary

For Donbas, this is an internal Ukrainian problem, and we [Russia] are doing everything we can to contribute to its solution.

Disproof

One of the most common disinformation narratives claiming that Russia has nothing to do with the war in Ukraine. See a similar case denying Russia’s involvement in the conflict in Eastern Ukraine.

The European Union stated in July 2014 that "arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation". At the NATO Summit in Wales in September 2014 and at successive summits since then, NATO leaders condemned Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine in the strongest terms and demanded that Russia stop and withdraw its forces from Ukraine and along the country’s border. NATO leaders also demanded that Russia complies with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities; end its illegitimate occupation of Crimea; refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine; halt the flow of weapons, equipment, people and money across the border to the separatists; and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border.

In 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's military presence in Ukraine.

Read similar narratives about Ukraine's role in the conflict and the Minsk Agreements.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue184
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/02/2020
  • Language/target audience: Arabic
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Eastern Ukraine, Donbas

Disclaimer

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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Crimea is a Russian region

Crimea is a Russian region; in light of current development programmes, any proposal to supply water to [Crimea] on a commercial or a non-commercial basis can be considered.

 

Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea.

Crimea is not Russian but was illegally annexed by Moscow based on an illegitimate referendum. On 27 March 2014, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution in which it stated that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. On 17th December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea.

RT watched more than CNN and BBC on Youtube

RT is the first TV channel around the world to cross the 10 billion mark on YouTube! The RT channel network outperformed all global news channels, including BBC, CNN, Al Jazeera, Euronews and Fox News, after reaching 10 billion views on Youtube

Disproof

It is unclear what methodology RT has used to reach the claim that it is the most-watched TV channel on Youtube. Anything close to the 10 billion figure can only be achieved by adding up viewership of all RT services in all languages. If we apply the same methodology to the BBC and CNN, they will comfortably pass the 10 billion views mark. As of 12/02/2020, the CNN News network has reached, at the very least, 11 billion views, and this does not include the non-news services owned by the CNN such as HBO. As for the BBC, the Youtube views of BBC news services in only 14 languages (out of 27) were at least 14 billion in 12/02/2020. This also does not include content such as sports and children's entertainment. It is also not clear whether RT has included its non-news outlets/Youtube channels (e.g. RT Sport) to the 10 billion figure.

See a similar earlier case here.

There is no accurate list of victims who were killed during NATO bombing of Yugoslavia

There is no accurate list of all the victims even after 20 years since the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia. Estimates are that during the NATO bombing, between 1,500 and 2,500 people died and about 6,000 were injured. However, none made a list of their names.

 

 

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the number of civilian casualties of NATO bombing, previously debunked by Polygraph, and war in former Yugoslavia, aiming to portray NATO's bombing in Yugoslavia as more devastating and to demonise NATO's actions during the Yugoslav war.

The Sputnik article presents no source of the quoted number of killed civilians. According to the Humanitarian Law Center, in Serbia (excluding Kosovo) and Montenegro, 275 persons lost their lives in the NATO bombings: 180 civilians, 90 members of the Yugoslav Armed Forces and five members of the Ministry of Interior of Serbia. In Kosovo, 484 people were killed: 267 civilians (209 Albanian and 58 non-Albanian), 171 members of the YA, 20 members of the Serbian MUP and 26 members of the KLA (19 of whom died in the NATO bombing of the Dubrava prison, near Istok). Here you can see the list of names of people who lost their lives in NATO bombing.