Disinfo: UK sanctions on Russia are illegal

Summary

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova stressed that the unilateral sanctions imposed by the UK on Russia over the Alexei Navalny case are "illegal", as they have not been approved by the UN Security Council.

Russia has repeatedly called on Britain and its partners to provide evidence in the Navalny case, but they ignored those calls.

Disproof

Recurrent pro-Kremlin narrative which disputes the UK's imposition of sanctions on Russia, insisting that the United Nations Security Council is the only relevant international actor who can do so, while claiming that Moscow is still waiting for evidence regarding the poisoning of Alexei Navalny.

Restrictive measures have been imposed by the EU in relation to the poisoning of Navalny since 2020, with the UK being a member of the Union at that time.

As of 1 January 2021, after the end of the Brexit transition, the UK sanctions regime in relation to Russia is set out in the Russia (Sanctions) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019 (SI 2019/855).

The UK government has made it clear that it will continue to implement the EU’s Chemical Weapons sanctions regime at the end of the Transition Period, through its own autonomous UK Chemical Weapons sanctions regime.

On a similar note, the EU has the competence to impose sanctions independently of the UN to further the objectives of the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), namely a) promoting international peace and security, b) preventing conflicts, c) supporting democracy, the rule of law and human rights and d) defending the principles of international law, as the EU did in the case of the illegal annexation of Crimea. The poisoning of Navalny falls in the context of applying restrictive measures (sanctions) to support democracy, rule of law and human rights.

Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny fell ill during a flight from Siberia to Moscow on the 20th of August. Initially hospitalised in Omsk, at the request of his family he was transferred to Charité hospital in Berlin, where clinical findings indicated that Navalny was poisoned by Novichok. This was also confirmed by France and Sweden, and later on by the OPCW (which Russia is also a member of).

Furthermore, Germany also informs Russia via diplomatic channels on the progress of the investigation.

See similar cases in our database claiming that the EU destroyed relations with Russia; or that the Navalny poisoning could be a strategy of the West to introduce anti-Russian sanctions; or that only traces of alcohol and caffeine were found in Navalny's blood; or that the US used Navalny case to block Russian vaccine; or that Western accusations on Navalny’s case are as false as they were about Sergei Skripal and Alexander Litvinenko.

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Disinfo: Ukraine is a failed state 30 years since its existence

For 30 years, Ukraine has failed as a state. The reason for this is the extremely unfortunate format of state-building, the artificial concept “Ukraine is not Russia”, which is oriented towards confronting Russia in everything. Instead of building a multinational state, Ukrainians began to create “not Russia”, a state that was supposed to demonstrate its non-Russianness as much as possible. Accordingly, history was rewritten in which Ukraine existed as a separate subject of international relations. As a result, this only split Ukrainian society into Russian-speaking and non-Russian-speaking sides.

After the Maidan, the Ukrainian authorities only boosted the intensity of this wrong policy which also is denying its Russianness and opposing and conflicting with all Russianness.

The result of such a policy is clear: Ukraine is undergoing deindustrialisation, depopulation, civil war, an economically permanent crisis dependent on the International Monetary Fund and Europe.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives designed to denigrate the history of Ukraine, Ukrainian statehood and its independence, claiming that Ukraine is a failed state.

The claim that Ukraine is a failed state is unsubstantiated. Pro-Kremlin media outlets often cast doubts on Ukrainian statehood and claim that Ukraine either does not exist as a state or is going to tumble down very soon. In reality, present-day Ukraine has been on the world map since 1991 when the Soviet Union disintegrated. It has elected six presidents since then and changed parties in government several times which illustrates political diversity and democratic dynamics even during economic hardship in the wake of Russian aggression in 2014. Ukraine's Western partners have been providing it with financial and technical assistance.

Disinfo: Afghan scenario could repeat itself in Ukraine

Ukrainian authorities "servilely serve" the Western countries, striving to enter NATO.

But was the ousted pro-American regime in Kabul saved by the fact that Afghanistan had the status of the main US ally outside NATO? A similar situation awaits supporters of the American choice in Ukraine, where neo-Nazis are capable of coming to power.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about abandoned Ukraine, also presenting the country as Nazi/Fascist.

It is speculative and misleading to compare the situation in Afghanistan and Ukraine. There are no US military forces deployed on the territory of Ukraine. The relations between Washington and Kiyv are based on mutual respect and cooperation. As it is officially noted: “U.S. policy is centered on supporting Ukraine in the face of continued Russian aggression as it advances reforms to strengthen democratic institutions, fight corruption, and promote conditions for economic growth and competition.”

Disinfo: Kyiv heightens tension in Donbas

The situation in South-Eastern Ukraine remains tense, Kyiv’s actions are destructive and Ukraine proposes provocative legislation that runs counter to the Minsk agreements.

Disproof

This is a recurring disinformation narrative from pro-Kremlin media, accusing Ukraine of provocations in Donbas and trying to make it responsible for the non-implementation of the Minsk agreements.

In reality, tensions escalated along the Russian-Ukrainian roughly from February till May 2021, when Russia was amassing military personnel and equipment on the border. Moscow was justifying its military build-up by Kyiv's alleged readiness to attack the separatist-held territories in Donbas together with NATO troops. Eventually, Russia did partially withdraw soldiers from the border area but maintained large amounts of heavy equipment in the nearby region. Some analysts estimated that the real goal of Russia's escalation was its attempt to occupy the northern part of Kherson Region, which borders on the Crimean Peninsula. In 2014, Ukraine stopped water supplies to the peninsula through the North Crimea Canal, which runs through Kherson Region. Crimea is now suffering severe water shortages, because it had been receiving about 85% of fresh water supplies from mainland Ukraine before Russia’s illegal annexation.