Disinfo: Ukraine can soon collapse and lose East and South of the country granted by Lenin in 1918

Summary

Odesa is historically Novorossia. Kharkiv and Donbas are the territories of the Donetsk-Kryvyi Rih Republic, which grandfather Lenin attached to Ukraine in 1918. These seams, which were used to patch Ukraine together into a “Great Ukraine,” can both sew together and tear apart. Therefore, they are natural dividing lines.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine's imminent collapse designed to denigrate the history of Ukraine, Ukrainian statehood and its independence.

Ukraine is a sovereign and independent state with a democratically-elected president and parliament. Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity are respected by most of the free world, confirmed by the resolutions of the United Nations, but violated by Russia.

The history of Ukraine dates back to the era of the Kyivan Rus’ in the 9th-13th centuries. A fully independent Ukraine only emerged in the 20th century, after long periods of successive domination by Poland-Lithuania, Russia, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR). In 1917-1920, a Ukraine Peoples' Republic was established embracing the East and South of today's Ukraine. Under Lenin's leadership at the beginning of the 20th century, Ukraine was occupied by the Bolsheviks and for decades was under communist control.

When the Soviet Union began to unravel in 1990–91, the legislature of the Ukrainian S.S.R. declared sovereignty (16 July 1990) and then outright independence (24 August 1991). With the dissolution of the U.S.S.R. in December 1991, Ukraine gained full independence.

Read similar cases claiming that Ukrainian statehood is an inheritance from soviet Ukraine, that Ukraine was created by Vladimir Lenin, that Crimea never belonged to Ukraine, or that Turkey and Hungary to address territorial claims to Ukraine.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 225
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 04/01/2021
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Ukraine, Ukrainian disintegration, Ukrainian statehood

Disclaimer

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.

see more

Minsk will punish Lithuania economically for its support to the Belarusian opposition

Belarus will reroute cargo from Lithuanian ports to Russia. It needs to be done due to the behaviour of Lithuania in the context of the presidential elections in Belarus. Vilnius began to support ex-candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya when officially Alexander Lukashenko won the elections. The Belarusian authorities stated that Lithuania, Poland and other Western countries openly support the Belarusian opposition and want to provoke protests in Belarus. The European Union announced sanctions on Minsk too.

The EU should not use sanctions to scare Belarus because Minsk is ready to answer. I.e., cargo transportation from Belarus forming 30 per cent of the budget of Lithuania.

<…>

The economy of Lithuania will be seriously damaged without Belarusian transit.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Lithuania and alleged Western attempts to organise a colour revolution in Belarus. This article also includes a fake statement about the dependence of the Lithuanian economy on Belarus.

According to the European Union, the 2020 Presidential elections in Belarus were neither free nor fair. The protests in Belarus started after the election day as the reaction of society to potential falsification of results. The European Union also does not recognise Aleksandr Lukashenko as the legitimate president of Belarus. The EU sanctions were not just announced but already implemented.

Russia’s foreign policy is based on respect of UN resolutions, territorial integrity and people’s rights to self determination

We have always known Russia’s foreign policy to be principled, transparent and clear, and based on respecting the decisions of the United Nations and the Security Council on all regional and international crises.

If we follow [Russia’s foreign ministry] activities, we will clearly see how they were never biased towards one party at the expense of another, but rather put the national interest of the peoples of these countries at the top of their priorities; it is always based on respect for state sovereignty, territorial integrity and the right of peoples to self-determination.

Disproof

A pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russia being respectful of international law, and never interfering in other country's affairs. Russia has a long record of violating other states' sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Since 1991, Russia was involved in several international conflicts, including intervention in neighbouring states, such as Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine in 2014. Many international organisations condemned Russian occupation of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, see e.g. the CSCE statement here and the European Parliament's declaration.

There is no evidence that the Russian diplomats expelled from Colombia were spies, it’s all a narrative created by Colombian media

Colombian mainstream media devoted disproportionate coverage to detail how Aleksandr Belousov and Aleksandr Paristov wanted to obtain information on Colombia’s energetic, technological and military infrastructure, nothing too surprising coming from officials of a country like Russia that makes and exports products of these fields. There is nothing unusual about officials from the Russian Embassy wanting to obtain this kind of information, and the activities shown by Colombian media are perfectly compatible with collecting information to serve the state they represent, something that all embassies around the world do. Even if they paid for the information, as the articles claim, it could be a questionable method and more concerning for Russian taxpayers than for the Colombian authorities, but this by no means qualifies as espionage. In contrast with the media enthusiasm for having an alleged episode of spying, Colombian authorities so far, including the president and the foreign minister, didn’t talk of espionage at any moment, but of “activities incompatible with the dispositions of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations”. So everything points that the Colombian media, as usual, are being overzealous.

Disproof

Contrary to the claim, the Colombian authorities have no doubt about the role of the Russian diplomats expelled from the country on December 8, 2020. Colombian media based their reporting on investigations carried out by the intelligence services of their own country, who provided their results (in Spanish) to some of them, such as El Tiempo and Semana, and even granted them interviews (in Spanish).

According to a Colombian intelligence report reviewed by Colombian newspaper El Tiempo (in Spanish), Aleksandr Paristov was positively identified by the allied intelligence services of the US and UK as a member of Russia’s Foreign Intelligence (SVR). The same publication stated that Colombia’s National Direction of Intelligence (DNI) identified the other man, Aleksandr Nikolayevich Belousov, as a member of Russia’s Military Intelligence (GRU).