Disinfo: Ukraine forbids 40% of the people to speak Russian

Summary

What happened in Ukraine happened because Ukraine forbids 40% of the people to speak their native language.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Ukraine and discrimination against Russian speakers. According to the latest survey, 27% of Ukrainian citizens use the Russian language in their everyday communication; the Ukrainian language is preferred by 51% of Ukrainians and 21% are bilingual. On April 25 2019, the Verkhovna Rada passed the law 'on ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as a state language'. The law establishes mandatory use of the Ukrainian language in most areas of public and communal life, including the mass media, education, science, etc. However, the law does not forbid the use of Russian, or other languages, in private communication and religious ceremonies. Moreover, Russian and other languages can be present in book publishing, the press, including radio and television, education and the service sector. The law also allows the use of other languages in the healthcare system and law enforcement. In addition to this, the law stipulates that in accordance with the European Charter for Regional Languages and Languages of National Minorities, the government should develop a law safeguarding language-rights of the minorities within six months of the language law entering into force.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 184
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/02/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Ukraine, Russian language
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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.