Disinfo: Real aim of German statement on Navalny’s poisoning is to impose new sanctions

Summary

The real aims of Germany’s statement that Aleksey Navalny was poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok are probably to hinder the Nord Stream 2 project and to impose new sanctions on Russia. The German government has adopted a political position based on ideology. This is why it did not take seriously the opinion of Russian doctors nor that of Professor Leonid Rink, who was involved in the development of Novichok. After Berlin’s announcement about the alleged poisoning of Navalny, a media campaign was launched in order to spread unilateral “evidence” aimed at blaming Russia. The objective is to create tensions between Russia and the West, to put pressure on the Russian Presidency and perhaps to impose sanctions on Russia. A scenario similar to that of other alleged poisonings of Russian opposition figures and former intelligence officials (Litvinenko, Skripal, Verzilov, Kara-Murza) is being played out.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the poisoning of Alexei Navalny.

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.

There is no evidence what so ever to claim that the poisoning is in any way related to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

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

See related disinformation cases alleging that the West has an interest in the death of Navalny to launch a new wave of sanctions against Russia and that the West will falsely accuse Russia of poisoning Navalny, as with Skripal and Litvinenko.

 

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 210
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 02/09/2020
  • Language/target audience: Italian
  • Country: Russia, Germany
  • Keywords: Skripal, Conspiracy theory, novichok, Nord Stream 2, OPCW, Alexei Navalny, Russophobia, Conspiracy, Sanctions, Alexander Litvinenko

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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The case of Navalny is just a pretext for the West to enforce Russophobia

The case of Navalny is just a pretext for the West to go against Putin and to enforce Russophobia.

One does not have to be a genius to realise that an attack on Alexei Navalny harms the Kremlin and benefits Western actors. But that doesn’t matter, because for a long time now Russophobic politicians and media have been lurking for their chance […] .

Let’s be honest: the case will probably never be solved. For if “the West” really had reliable evidence of Russia’s involvement, the absurd chains of evidence and logic that already insulted our intelligence in the Skripal case would not be brought forward again. And if “the Kremlin” were to present certain proof pointing to a different mastermind than Moscow, this proof would be denied and discredited in the West.

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.

Navalny and Nord Stream 2: The Americans are recouping their long-term investment in Alexei

Russia has no benefit in the hypothetical poisoning of opposition politician Alexei Navalny. This incident cannot be beneficial to Russia, and the unfounded accusations against Moscow and the demands to suspend the Nord Stream 2 project indicate that it is a political order.

Both Navalny and Skripal are already waste material. But their consequences are very beneficial to the United States because now they are trying to push through the cancellation of Nord Stream 2. The Americans, it seems, have finally decided to recoup their long-term investment in Alexei.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory. Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Alexei Navalny's poisoning.

There are no grounds for connecting the cause of Navalny's poisoning with the construction of Nord Stream 2.

Alexei Navalny, originally an anti-Russian project, was poisoned by his sponsors

Alexei Navalny is an expensive and long-term project. I do not know who and when decided to include Alexei Navalny on the [Russian] political agenda. Yes, this is probably not important now, since we have the opportunity to observe the end of the project.

Navalny was very quickly brought into the big game in order to exclude Russia from an even more global game – the battle for Belarus. Everyone, both those who have invested a lot of money into this person from abroad for many years and those who saw him as a real leader and future president of Russia, understands now that spending more money on him is useless.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory. Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Alexei Navalny alleging that he was sponsored by anti-Russian forces, while also deflecting the news agenda away from responsibility for his poisoning.

Alexei Navalny is a key Russian opposition politician and an anti-corruption activist. He is a founder and a leader of the "Anti-Corruption Foundation" ("Fond Boriby s Korrypciey"), where he uncovered the life of Russian politicians and businessmen close to the government, different corruption practices, etc. He ran in in the Moscow mayoral elections in 2013 and came second. He claimed election fraud but still lost the elections. In 2018, he was campaigning for the Presidency of Russia but the Central Electoral Commission barred him from participation. The Russian government detained him multiple times and prosecuted for different criminal and administrative offences.