There is no freedom of speech in Estonia

Summary

The only thing we are guilty of is the fact that we are journalists working for an outlet independent of any government. While we fight for the right to continue our work, we also fight for the rights of readers in Estonia and abroad to access the full spectrum of information.

This is called freedom of speech, that, sadly, is missing in Estonia today, despite the fact that according to Reporters without borders, our country is fit for 11th place in the Press freedom index.

Disproof

As for the freedom of speech, Estonia is indeed on the 11th place of Reporters without Borders Press freedom index. It's important to note that Estonia has not blocked Sputnik Estonia's website, as it is accessible and operational. The Minister of Foreign Affairs Urmas Reinsalu has emphasized that Estonia has not taken any measures against the portal's media content: "They are financial sanctions aimed at economic activity. I believe it to be justified. We have notified the European Commission's Legal Service. European agencies have said in the Commission that steps taken by Estonia in exercising sanctions policy are warranted."

Sputnik was created by a Presidential decree with the aim to “report on the state policy of Russia abroad”. Numerous reports have described how top managers from all the large government-controlled outlets and some influential private media attend the weekly meetings where "media managers receive guidelines that “help” them not to overstep the Kremlin’s so-called “double white lines”".

The EU vs Disinfo team has found 49 different Sputnik websites from all over the world and 31 of them are in the Disinfrormation cases database, meaning those outlets have been reported publishing disinformation. Sputnik Estonia is represented in that database both in Estonian and in Russian languages.

Article 2 of the Council Regulation (EU) No 269/2014 on the territorial integrity of Ukraine foresees freezing the assets of Dmitry Kiselyov, the Director General of Rossiya Segodnya. As a result, Estonian banks froze accounts of Rossiya Segodnya and the Financial Intelligence Unit informed persons employed or contracted by Rossiya Segodnya that knowing performance of work or services to a sanctioned person was forbidden.

 

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 178
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 01/01/2020
  • Language/target audience: Estonian
  • Country: Estonia
  • Keywords: Dmitry Kiselyov, Sanctions, Sputnik
  • Outlet: Sputnik Estonia
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EU pursues policy of demonisation of Russia

The so called historical resolution of the European Parliament has no connection to history whatsoever. It’s a pure provocation, which is consistent with the current EU policy towards Russia – demonisation.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the EU and the resolution of the European Parliament on the importance of European remembrance for the future of Europe. Also see previous disinformation cases accusing others of provocations.

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, based on the principles of respect for democracy and human rights, political and economic freedom, and commitment to international peace and security. Furthermore, the PCA is complemented by sectorial agreements covering a wide range of policy areas, including political dialogue, trade, science and technology, education, energy and environment, transport, and prevention of illegal activities. Some of these dialogues and consultations have been suspended following the annexation of Crimea. Read more here.

Poland started World War II

Using the enormous archive of trophy documents Putin has proved two crucial points: first, on the eve of the World War II Poland basically formed a military alliance with Hitler’s Germany and secondly, anti-antisemitism became a state ideology of Poland before the war. This means that Poland, together with Nazi Germany, is the culprit of starting World War II.

Disproof

Historical revisionism consistent with recurring disinformation pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Poland and the WWII. 

Poland did not start World War II, it was Nazi Germany, which attacked Poland on September 1, 1939, with Soviet troops entering Polish territory on September 17.

The Poles thanked Hitler for exterminating the Jews

Immediately after the war between Germany and Poland ended, a thousand delegates from the Polish Peasants’ Party voted in favour of a resolution in which they thanked (Adolf) Hitler for the extermination of the Polish Jews and demanded the expulsion of the survivors.

Disproof

A recurring disinformation message that is part of the Kremlin’s policy of historical revisionism.

This passage refers back to the 2006 review of the book entitled "Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland After Auschwitz," by Jan T. Gross, where David Margolick writes: "With the war over, and to tumultuous applause, a thousand delegates of the Polish Peasants Party actually passed a resolution thanking Hitler for annihilating Polish Jewry and urging that those he'd missed be expelled."