Disinfo: The West cannot resolve the coronavirus crisis without Russian help

Summary

The West cannot resolve the coronavirus crisis without Russian help. China set the standard in how they washed their streets and the way they fought this coronavirus in public places. It turned out that the West simply could not do anything like that. For example, in Bergamo, Russian help was required to achieve the same results.

Disproof

This claim exploits the coronavirus pandemic to push a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the EU's alleged imminent collapse. It also aims to pit EU member states against each other in an attempt to undermine European solidarity - another recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation tactic. EU Member States are helping each other in this crisis; for example, German hospitals offered to treat critical coronavirus patients from France and Italy, as well as sending ventilators to Spain, whilst the Czech Republic sent masks to Italy. As for the disinfection of public places, EU countries began the disinfection in late February. On 18 February, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control issued "Interim guidance for environmental cleaning in non-healthcare facilities exposed to SARS-CoV-2". You can see how the streets were disinfected in Italy in early March here. Read further information about the EU's collective measures to fight coronavirus disinformation.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 191
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 02/04/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Country: EU, Russia
  • Keywords: coronavirus, Europe
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EU refused to help Italy with coronavirus

The European Union refused to provide assistance to Italy in the fight against coronavirus, instead, this was done by Russia. European officials actively discouraged Russian aid for Italy. Europe is no longer united.

Disproof

Baseless speculation, consistent with a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the imminent collapse of the EU. France has donated 1 million masks to Italy, Germany has donated 7 tons of masks and other protective equipment, helping save lives. Hospitals across Germany are treating critically ill patients from Italy and France, making their own intensive care beds available for Italian and French citizens. Germany has delivered 300 ventilators to Italy. Austria transported 1.5 million masks to Italy, while Czechia offered 10,000 protective suits. The European Commission has approved a €50 million Italian aid scheme to support the production and supply of medical devices, such as ventilators, and personal protection equipment, such as masks, goggles, gowns, and safety suits. The scheme will help Italy provide the necessary medical treatment to those infected while protecting healthcare operators and citizens.

The European Union is supporting the Member States in addressing the crisis and mitigating the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. To cushion the blow to people’s livelihoods and the economy, the European Commission has adopted a comprehensive economic response to the outbreak, applied the full flexibility of the EU fiscal rules, has revised its State Aid rules and proposed to set up a EUR 37 billion Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative to provide liquidity to small businesses and the health care sector. To support scientific research into the COVID-19, the European Commission earmarked 47,5 million EUR for shortlisted research projects that can improve epidemiology and public health, including preparedness and response to outbreaks. The EU has also created the first-ever stockpile of medical equipment. Read more about the EU's response here and here.

Blaming China for COVID-19 is a ploy, like blaming Russia for MH17

The assumption that China created COVID 19 is based on an important research paper written in 2015 that tied a research facility in Wuhan to a study on a bat virus that created something capable of infecting the world, a disease exactly like COVID 19. This is the origin of the “blame China” ploy, just like the blame Russia for fake gas attacks in Syria or when the Kiev regime shot down MH17. All that was needed was a fake court, fake evidence and controlled media.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory with no evidence given; a straw man argument, attacking an imaginary position of the opponent. No serious sources suggest China "created" the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which has caused the COVID-19 outbreak. A recent analysis of the genome sequence of SARS-CoV-2 virus found no evidence that it was developed artificially in a lab or otherwise engineered. The virus comes from a family of viruses originating in animals that includes others such as SARS and MERS. It was first reported in the Chinese city of Wuhan in central China in late 2019 and has been rapidly spreading across the world. The claim that "Russia is blamed for fake gas attacks" ostensibly refers to the war in Syria and is another example of the straw man argument. Russia has never been accused of using chemical weapons during its military involvement in Syria; however, Russia has supported the Assad regime, which has used toxic gas against opposition strongholds. The international investigation into the downing of flight MH17, which killed all 298 people onboard, has concluded that the perpetrators who fired the Russian-made BUK TELAR missile that shot down the plane were connected to Russian armed forces units. The ongoing trial in Amsterdam will evaluate the evidence produced by the investigation. Pro-Kremlin media have been aggressively attempting to question the legitimacy of the investigation and the Dutch judiciary. Examples of cases on MH17 can be found here. This case is another example of how the pro-Kremlin disinformation machine exploits crisis situations like the current COVID-19 pandemic to spread disinformation about other topics and opportunistically adapts existing pro-Kremlin narratives to new contexts.

USAID is a CIA-affiliated terror group that created the coronavirus

With the accusation against China, all that is needed is for China to be tied, in this case for supplying a virus, to a dangerous terror group, to a global pandemic. The terror group, as we discovered was the USAID, a CIA affiliate that used the Wuhan virus to create something frightening at the University of North Carolina, not in Wuhan.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory, presented with no evidence to support the claim that the coronavirus was created in the USA. This is part of the Kremlin's ongoing coronavirus disinformation campaign and is based on recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about biological weapons. The World Health Organisation has concluded that the virus first appeared in the Chinese province of Hubei. The novel coronavirus "2019-nCoV” comes from a family of viruses originating in animals that includes others such as SARS and MERS. There is no evidence to suggest it was developed artificially in a laboratory as a weapon of mass destruction. A group of public health scientists have condemned rumours and conspiracy theories about the origin of coronavirus outbreak: "We stand together to strongly condemn conspiracy theories suggesting that COVID-19 does not have a natural origin." The authors of The Lancet statement note that scientists from several countries who have studied 2019-nCoV “overwhelmingly conclude that this coronavirus originated in wildlife, just like many other viruses that have recently emerged in humans." There are numerous similar disinformation cases claiming that the coronavirus was created in a laboratory, that the coronavirus an Anglo-Saxon biological warning originating in US labs, that it is a US provocation against China, a tool to weaken the Chinese economy, and an attempt by the Anglo-Saxons to control China.