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
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Ukraine, Russian language
  • Outlet: 60 Minut @ Rossiya 1 time 56:20-56:31
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The US wants to destroy Belarusian economy and statehood

The US’s global goal is to build a unipolar world, and its goal towards Belarus is torpedoing integration in the post-Soviet space and of the Union State between Belarus and Russia. While nominally the US promised to deliver oil to Belarus, in reality, it is pushing Belarus to destroy its national economy. Instead of building a less dependent economy on Russia, Belarus can only become a totally dependent country on the West, without economy and statehood.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory which is consistent with recurring Belarus-related pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about West's aggressiveness towards Belarus and its attempts to disrupt Belarusian-Russian relations. This message is based on a false dilemma about the direction of Belarus's political and economic development (successful union with Russia vs. ruined economy and lost statehood).

See similar propagandistic false dilemmas for Belarus: union with Russia vs. no future, normal development under Russia vs. forced Polonization and economic devastation, turning into a Russian western federal area vs. descent into Nazism. See also earlier disinformation cases claiming that the EU wants Belarus to lose its independence and is trying to disrupt Belarus-Russia relations.

The conflict in Donbas is an internal Ukrainian problem

For Donbas, this is an internal Ukrainian problem, and we [Russia] are doing everything we can to contribute to its solution.

Disproof

One of the most common disinformation narratives claiming that Russia has nothing to do with the war in Ukraine. See a similar case denying Russia’s involvement in the conflict in Eastern Ukraine.

The European Union stated in July 2014 that "arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation". At the NATO Summit in Wales in September 2014 and at successive summits since then, NATO leaders condemned Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine in the strongest terms and demanded that Russia stop and withdraw its forces from Ukraine and along the country’s border. NATO leaders also demanded that Russia complies with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities; end its illegitimate occupation of Crimea; refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine; halt the flow of weapons, equipment, people and money across the border to the separatists; and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border.

Crimea is a Russian region

Crimea is a Russian region; in light of current development programmes, any proposal to supply water to [Crimea] on a commercial or a non-commercial basis can be considered.

 

Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea.

Crimea is not Russian but was illegally annexed by Moscow based on an illegitimate referendum. On 27 March 2014, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution in which it stated that the referendum in Crimea was not valid and could not serve as a basis for any change in the status of the peninsula. On 17th December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea.