The Crimean peninsula was reunified with Russia five years ago

Summary

The Crimean peninsula was reunified with Russia five years ago.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on the annexation of Crimea claiming that Crimean citizens chose to rejoin Russia through a legal referendum.

No international body recognises the so-called referendum held on the 16th of March 2014.  On the 27th of February 2014, when the so-called referendum was announced, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution which 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.  A year later Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum.

Following the covert invasion of “little green men,” power in Crimea was vested in a makeshift executive headed by Sergey Aksenov, a former mafia enforcer. The new Crimean regime conducted the referendum hastily and at gunpoint, barred impartial observers from entering the peninsula, and instead invited dozens of fringe politicians and activists to “monitor” the procedure, most of them far-right Kremlin loyalists.

Vladimir Putin, the President of Russia, recognised April 17th 2015 that "our soldiers were deployed in Crimea to help the inhabitants express their opinion" (Interfax). Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum.

Five years after the illegal annexation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol by the Russian Federation, the EU issued a statement in which it confirms its commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and reiterates that it does not recognise and continues to condemn this violation of international law.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 150
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 17/05/2019
  • Language/target audience: Germany
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: illegal annexation, Manipulated elections/referendum, Referendum, Crimea
  • Outlet: Sputnik Deutsch
see more

US might provoke tensions in Georgia’s Pankisi Gorge and build military base near Russian border

The US has an interest in destabilising Georgia’s Pankisi Gorge, inhabited by ethnic Chechens. The US might provoke tensions in the Gorge and under the pretext of countering terrorism, it will build military bases in Georgia near the Russian border. The US special forces entered Georgia before under anti-terrorism motive and never left. Thus, the US seeks for any ground to have a military presence in Georgia.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative portraying Georgia's Pankisi Gorge as a safe haven for terrorists and the US as supporting terrorism. In fact, the government of Georgia regained control over Pankisi Gorge through the Train and Equip Program (GTEP) by the US Government, which ultimately saved the country from Russian intervention. See other examples here.

GTEP, with a budget worth USD 64 million, began on May 27, 2002, and was implemented in several phases. As a result, Georgia's Armed Forces significantly increased its capacity in the direction of combined operations implementation; abilities and skills of conducting anti-terrorist operations were improved and strengthened. Approximately 2,600 Georgian soldiers went through training in the framework of GTEP.

Despite emerging German imperialism, Germans remain subordinated to American culture

Germans are subordinated to American culture. And this is despite the fact that German imperialism is being revived within the EU in a mild form.
Disproof

This message contains ungrounded claim about a rising German imperialism, combined with a lost sovereignty narrative frequently promoted by pro-Kremlin disinformation sources.

Imperialism is policy or ideology of extending a nation's rule over foreign nations, often by military force or by gaining political and economic control of other areas. The allegation about a present-day revival of German imperialism is ungrounded.

Saudi Arabia takes steps towards recognising Crimea as part of Russia

The Saudi Embassy in Moscow issues visas to Russian Crimean Muslim pilgrims without informing the Ukrainian authorities. Riyadh has de facto recognised the Crimeans as citizens of Russia. Despite the absence of official recognition, the monarchy is changing its attitude towards Crimea and Russia as a whole.

Disproof

Saudi Arabia's Embassy in Moscow confirmed that it has been issuing visas for Crimean Tatars willing to make a Hajj, in Moscow, in their Russian passports, since 2014.

Since 2015, a Russian intermediary company with offices in Moscow and in Crimea has been operating as a Hajj tour operator. However, Saudi Arabia does not link the issue of visas with the recognition of Crimea. The Council of Muftis of the Russian Federation urged Russian media outlet "Izvestia", which raised the question itself, not to mix politics and religious pilgrimage. The practice of the Saudis issuing visas for pilgrims has been going on for five years. No recent changes showing a different attitude of Saudi Arabia to this issue can be demonstrated.