Disinfo: The Crimean people chose to be with Russia through democratic procedure


Democracy implies that people themselves determine the form of their existence. The Crimean people have chosen to be with Russia through democratic procedures, and this is not taken into account.


This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on Russia's annexation of Crimea, claiming that people living in Crime chose to rejoin Russia through a legal and democratic referendum.

No international body has recognised the so-called referendum, announced on 27 February 2014, and held on 16 March 2014, which was organised by self-proclaimed Crimean leadership lacking democratic legitimacy and installed by armed Russian military personnel following the seizure of public buildings.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court has stated that “the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol amounts to an international armed conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. This international armed conflict began at the latest on 26 February 2014 when the Russian Federation deployed members of its armed forces to gain control over parts of the Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian Government."

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 17 December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea.

The EU's policy of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol includes a set of restrictive measures against entities and individuals responsible for actions against Ukraine's territorial integrity. In March 2019, on the fifth anniversary of Crimea's annexation, the EU reiterated its position of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol.

For similar cases, see here.


  • Reported in: Issue 176
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 06/12/2019
  • Language/target audience: Armenian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Democracy, Referendum, Crimea


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.

see more

NATO is an ineffective relic of the Cold War

Relying on NATO, which is an ineffective historical relic of the Cold War, is blatantly stupid and this mantra can be sustained only through massive propaganda. NATO is increasingly trying to drag us into wars that have nothing to do with the security of its members.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative undermining NATO's role as a defensive military alliance.

No evidence is given for the claim that NATO is attempting to initiate and drag its members into wars that have nothing to do with their security. This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative alleging that NATO has an aggressive agenda and is a threat to international peace and security.

German and French military cooperation creates contours for the 4th Reich

In the last years, French and German military-industrial complexes have been increasingly integrated. The two countries are working on joint manufacturing projects for armoured vehicles, artillery, military aircraft, and naval shipyards. Hence, the contours of European 4th Reich are outlined. A new kind of Germany can organize a new Drang nach Osten. Russia has to be ready for the creation of 4th European Reich.


This message is consistent with a recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about the Nazi-like West and aggressive anti-Russian West.

The Nazi ideology and present-time Germany, France, and the EU are based on opposite values ​​and principles. Read more here. In 2012, the EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for advancing the causes of peace, reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe. Pro-Kremlin media often use the accusation of Nazism as explained in our past analysis Nazi east, Nazi west, Nazi over the cuckoo's nest.

Russia helps to resolve the internal conflict in Ukraine

Moscow will do everything in its power to help overcome the internal Ukrainian crisis on the basis of the full implementation of the Minsk agreements.


One of the most common disinformation narratives about the "conflict" in Donbas, 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.