Disinfo: The objective of EU sanctions is to increase Russophobia

Summary

Calls for tougher sanctions and an independent investigation, despite the fact that no one will provide answers to all the questions about Navalny to Russia, aims exclusively to increase “Russophobia” in order to advance the selfish interests of some actors.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on the poisoning of Navalny, portraying Western governments and institutions as inherently Russophobic and trying to harm Russia.

A prominent Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny fell ill during a flight from Siberia to Moscow on the 20th of August. Initially hospitalized in Omsk,  at the request of his family he was transferred to Charité hospital in Berlin.

Clinical findings at the Charité hospital indicated that Navalny was poisoned with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. Subsequent toxicological tests provided unequivocal evidence of a chemical nerve agent of the Novichok group in the blood samples of Alexei Navalny.

Pro-Kremlin disinformation outlets frequently present a variety of mutually exclusive versions of what happened to Alexei Navalny. Similar techniques were used to sow doubt about the poisoning of Sergei Skripal with the nerve agent Novichok by GRU agents.

Read similar disinformation cases alleging that the West will falsely accuse Russia of poisoning Navalny, as with Skripal and Litvinenko and that many questions to be answered on Navalny blood tests in Berlin.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 213
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 17/09/2020
  • Language/target audience: Arabic
  • Country: Russia
  • Keywords: Skripal, novichok, Alexei Navalny, Russophobia, Sanctions

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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Belarusians will become beggars if Lukashenko is overthrown

It is a bit incorrect to compare events in Belarus with the events in Ukraine in 2014, but it is worth noting that Western countries do not lose hope of turning Minsk into Kyiv six years ago.

For example, Lithuania and Poland (by the way, it is known that it is the Polish special services that oversee the Belarusian opposition) offered Belarus a visa-free regime. But the prospect of becoming another Slavic migrant workers does not tempt Belarusians at all.

The Ukrainian government, of course, supports the Belarusian opposition. And this is not surprising. The current government is taking its seats solely thanks to the overthrow of Yanukovych. But ordinary Ukrainians dissuade Belarusians from trying to overthrow the president and tell what will happen to their country if they make a fatal mistake: “Shove Lukashenko off, and that’s it, you will become beggars.”

Disproof

This is part of an ongoing Russian disinformation campaign on Belarus based on recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives, such as accusing other countries of interference and portraying popular protests against electoral fraud in the country as a Western-led colour revolution.

There is no evidence that European countries interfere in any way in the internal affairs of Belarus, or that without Alexander Lukashenko Belarus will become poor.

Tsikhanouskaya’s participation in an EU Council meeting is interference in Belarus’s affairs

The participation of the former presidential candidate in the Belarusian elections, Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya, in the meeting of EU foreign ministers indicates that Brussels has pulled away from its announcement about its lack of intention to interfere in the internal affairs of Belarus.

Disproof

This is part of an ongoing Russian disinformation campaign about post-electoral protests in Belarus, portraying demonstrations against president Alexander Lukashenko as Western-led.

EU foreign ministers met Tikhanovskaya before a European Council meeting designed to discuss the situation in Belarus and the sanctioning of 40 Belarusian officials.

NATO troops are illegally in Ukraine

Today NATO’s presence in Ukraine is not only illegal but contradicts the current Constitution of Ukraine. The Constitution is the most important law for any state! Were people of Ukraine asked if they wanted to be in NATO? They were just boldly deceived by a gang of swindlers who seized power in 2014 through a bloody coup d’etat.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine and NATO.

The presence of foreign troops on the territory of Ukraine is regulated by the law “On the procedure for admission and conditions of the stay of units of the armed forces of other states on the territory of Ukraine” and other international treaties. According to the law, foreign troops can be on the territory of Ukraine in the following cases: general training, transit movement, military assistance at the request of Ukraine itself, and others.