Disinfo: The US triggered a coup in Ukraine


The US triggered a coup in Ukraine, incited chaos, and enabled the creation of paramilitary troops to disrupt the country.


No evidence given to support this claim. It is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukrainian statehood which claims that the protests were organised by US and/or the West. A similar case can be found here.

There was no coup d’état in Ukraine in 2014.

The demonstrations which began in Kyiv in November 2013 – called "Maidan" or "Euromaidan" – were not provoked from outside but were a result of the Ukrainian people's frustration with former President Yanukovych's last minute U-turn, when after seven years of negotiations, he refused to sign the EU–Ukraine Association Agreement and halted progress towards Ukraine's closer relationship with the EU as a result of Russian pressure. The protesters' demands included constitutional reform, a stronger role for parliament, formation of a government of national unity, an end to corruption, early presidential elections and an end to violence  as can be read here.

Pro-Kremlin outlets do not deny the Russian military presence in Donbas and/or the annexation of Crimea.

The European Union does not recognise the illegal annexation of Crimea and continues to condemn this violation of international law, and that Russia’s illegal actions remain a direct challenge to international security, with grave implications for the international legal order that protects the unity and sovereignty of all States.

For more disinformation cases about Euromaidan see here.


  • Reported in: Issue162
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 08/08/2019
  • Language/target audience: Czech
  • Country: Ukraine, US
  • Keywords: Ukraine, Eastern Ukraine, Ukrainian disintegration, Euromaidan, Ukrainian statehood


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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Christchurch shooting was a false flag operation

The Christchurch shooting was a false flag operation with the purpose of restricting gun laws in New Zealand.


This claim is a conspiracy theory presented without any evidence. Alleging false flag operations is a common tactic of pro-Kremlin disinformation.

The Christchurch shooter, a man named Brenton Tarrant, was a white supremacist who espoused racist and anti-immigrant views, which were detailed in a manifesto that he sent to numerous people just a few minutes before the shooting. His attack had ideological motives and there is no evidence to support the conspiracy theory that he is somehow linked to the New Zealand government or to any other government.

Twitter didn’t find any Russian effort to influence Brexit

To explain why the British voted to withdraw from the EU, attention turned once again to the role of Russian trolls. Even Twitter began investigating the case. In the end, Twitter had to inform the British parliament that it found no evidence of Russian efforts to influence the outcome of the Brexit vote.


This is a misleading claim about the role of Russian troll activity on Twitter around the Brexit referendum. It is consistent with longstanding pro-Kremlin disinformation efforts to deny that Russia has engaged in electoral meddling, despite extensive proof to the contrary.

Twitter was initially criticised for its failure to provide an adequate response to the parliamentary committee seeking answers about Russian disinformation operations during Brexit. This did not mean that no evidence had been found of Russian efforts to influence the vote. In early 2018, Twitter admitted that Russian trolls had indeed targeted the Brexit vote during an evidence session with British MPs, who flew to the United States to question representatives from major technology firms as part of their fake news inquiry.

Malaysia was excluded from the MH17 investigation

Malaysia was excluded from the MH17 investigation.

In Malaysia there are still loud and clear doubts in the highest government circles about the course of events presented by the JIT and those responsible for the MH17 tragedy. International concerns have already raised the question of how long Malaysia, where the crashed plane and the airline originated, was excluded from JIT investigations. The downright hateful reactions to publicly expressed doubts by Malaysian government representatives about the evidence presented by JIT are also noted with dismay in Malaysia.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the downing of Flight MH17. See a similar case alleging that Malaysia was sidelined here.

Malaysia's Prosecutor's office cooperated in the investigation conducted by the Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team (JIT). Speaking at the press conference of the JIT on 19 June 2019, the Deputy Prosecutor General of Malaysia, Mohamad Hanafiah bin Zakaria, reiterated Malaysia's commitment to the JIT in seeking justice for the victims and stated that the JIT findings were based on extensive investigation and legal research [see 57:30 - 58:14].