Disinfo: The West considers Russia an enemy and does not intend an equal dialogue

Summary

Russia today is considered an alleged enemy of the European Union. There is a prejudice about Russia’s role and place in the world. No one is raising the question of the withdrawal of American tactical weapons from their territory. In practice, there are no measures [to that end] – neither from Germany nor from Italy. Furthermore, Poland is prepared to receive and use American arsenals. This is the modern world without illusions. It is hardly worth expecting a convergence of positions if one of the parties does not want it. In this situation, Russia can only rely on itself.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russophobia and about Western belligerence towards Russia.

Russia is the EU's largest neighbor, which has always been reflected in extensive cooperation and exchange for over 25 years. The current legal basis for EU-Russia relations is the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) which came into force in 1997, initially for 10 years. Since 2007 it has been renewed annually. It established a political framework for regular consultation between the EU and Russia.

Meanwhile, NATO created cooperation bodies – the Permanent Joint Council and the NATO-Russia Council – to embody its relationship with Russia. It also invited Russia to cooperate on missile defense. The Warsaw Summit Communique 2016 describes NATO's official policy towards Russia: "The Alliance does not seek confrontation and poses no threat to Russia. But we cannot, and will not, compromise on the principles on which our Alliance and security in Europe and North America rest."

Since 2014, the illegal annexation of Crimea and the conflict in Eastern Ukraine have seriously affected the bilateral political dialogue. As a result, some of the policy dialogues and mechanisms of cooperation are temporarily frozen. However, Russia remains a natural partner for the EU and a strategic player combating the regional and global challenges.

Read more similar disinformation cases alleging that the West develops the ‘old enemy image’ of Russia and that the EU ignores Russia’s efforts to reconcile an equal dialogue.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 186
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/02/2020
  • Outlet language(s) German
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: US, Russia
  • Keywords: security threat, West, Diplomacy with Russia, Anti-Russian, European Union, Russophobia
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Armenia initiates a referendum to ratify the Istanbul Convention

The authorities initiated a consitutional referendum to change members of the Constitutional court. This is aimed at ratifying the Istanbul Convention, even though it contradicts the Constitution.

For the Convention to be ratified, the Constitutional Court needs to conclude that it does not contradict Armenia’s Constitution.

With its current staff, the Constitutional Court of Armenia, would never reach such a conclusion. So, it is very important for the authorities to change the members of the Constitutional Court as soon as possible.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative about the Istanbul Convention. The Istanbul Convention (the Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence) is a treaty of the Council of Europe for the creation of a legal framework at pan-European level to protect women against all forms of violence, and prevent, prosecute and eliminate violence against women and domestic violence.

The referendum has nothing to do with the Istanbul Convention. Under the proposed amendments, the Constitutional court’s chairman and six other members appointed by former Armenian governments would be replaced by other judges to be confirmed by the current parliament. The chairman and members of the CC are accused of having remaining links to the “former corrupt regime”.

Ukraine's chances of joining the EU are miserable, economy is destroyed, industry in ruins, millions have left the country

Ukraine’s chances of joining the EU are miserable. Ukrainians are pleased to be among “good company”, but nobody wants to take them into such a company.

If you ask the Ukrainian authorities what they really did to join the European Union, the answer will be very sad. The economy of Ukraine is destroyed, industry is in ruins and the standard of living has fallen to such an extent that millions of Ukrainians have become migrants.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that the European Union is tired of Ukraine and no longer wants to help it and that there is no chance of Ukraine joining the EU. It is also a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative portraying the economic situation of Ukraine as disastrous.

European integration is defined by the Ukrainian authorities as a priority. On 11 February 2020, Prime Minister of Ukraine, Oleksiy Honcharuk, met with EU Commissioner for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations, Olivér Várhelyi, and discussed priorities for Ukraine-EU bilateral cooperation for 2020.

A small group of EU countries reinforces historical phobias about Russia

There is a small group of countries in the EU that reinforces historical phobias about Russia and constantly calls for Russia to be contained and for sanctions not to be reduced.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russophobia in the EU. EU sanctions against Russia were imposed after illegal actions by the Russian Federation, including the annexation of Crimea, and against persons that have been involved in the violation of Ukraine's territorial integrity. In March 2015, the European Council linked the duration of economic restrictions to the complete implementation of the Minsk agreements. The EU remains ready to ease sanctions when Russia starts contributing actively to the implementation of the Minsk agreements. “Russophobia” is a manipulative defensive line, often used by Russian propaganda to delegitimise any criticism of Russian policies or the state by implying that such criticism derives from an irrational intolerance of the Russian people. Outlets such as RT, Sputnik and Russian national state television use the term to portray almost any foreign criticism of the Kremlin's policies. Read similar disinformation cases alleging that Poland, the Baltic states and Ukraine are Russophobic and anti-Semitic and that Western journalism is dominated by Russophobia and prefers fantasy and story-telling to objective reporting.