Disinfo: Ukraine’s collapse accelerates, its regions are moving towards Russia without regard to Kyiv

Summary

Ukraine’s collapse has been developing since the proclamation of the country’s independence. By now it has reached a critical point. Odesa, Kharkiv, and Zaporizzhia regions are going to ask Russia for long-term economic assistance. They initiated negotiations with Moscow and neighbouring Russian regions about closer cooperation and integration. It is about some form of a regional economic partnership which will allow Ukrainian regions to survive through the economic crisis. It is hard to say yet how this economic cooperation will develop in the future. It may take the form of Crimea 1992 status [i.e. autonomous republics]. Mykolayiv and Kherson regions may also take part in the economic partnership. Therefore basically all eastern Ukrainian regions but Dnipropetrovsk region may develop a closer economic integration with Russia. The authorities of Ukraine will likely have to tolerate this development as it will be hard for them to wage a civil war on a few fronts.

Ukrainian authorities gave up on country’s regions. Regions do not hope for assistance from Kyiv or the West any longer. At the same time unemployment, poverty of the population, and industrial decline have all aggravated due to the pandemic. For years the regional authorities were worried that in case they move towards closer integration with Russia they could be announced separatists and suffer from counter-terrorist operation as in Donetsk or Luhansk. Now that the social and economic situation seriously aggravated, regional authorities of Ukraine can finally follow this path. It was opened by local legislation enacted five years ago which allows them to build a special relationship with neighbouring countries without regard to central authorities.

Disproof

This claim is consistent with coronavirus-related recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about Ukraine's disintegration and imminent collapse.

Ukraine is a sovereign state whose borders are guaranteed by international agreements and were de facto violated by Russia, which started a war in Ukraine. Ukrainian regions did not adopt local legislation which allows for independent economic or political relations which undermine the policies of central authorities, as alleged. Nor they are discussing such development with Russia as the publication claims.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 197
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 01/05/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: coronavirus, Civil war, Abandoned Ukraine, Ukrainian disintegration, Ukrainian statehood
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Coronovirus is Western operation, the WHO is controlled by Bill Gates

In the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak the US waged an information war against China. Through US-controlled foundations and media, mass hysteria was organised, with the aim of isolating China and attacking its economy. Later on, another virus strain was discovered in Italy but ignorant media continued sowing panic around “Chinese coronavirus.” In addition to fake media reporting about over-crowded hospitals and long lines of ambulances, producers and distributors of surgical masks, disinfectant, lab coats, lung ventilators, toilet paper, etc. also created an inflated demand based on coronavirus speculation. Now companies producing digital equipment for controlling people’s mobility come on up.

The World Health Organisation announced a pandemic although this decision goes in contrast to its own criteria. They say that a pandemic can be announced only if the share of infected people exceeds 5%. This controversy is logical, though, if one takes into account that the WHO is largely, by 75%, financed by international pharmaceutical companies and acts in their interests. Given that the annual returns of pharmaceutical giants have declined over the last years, they found a new business model focused on prevention of disease through vaccination of the population. The problem is that, in many countries, vaccination is voluntary. To overcome this problem and to make vaccination mandatory, the world should be frightened to the extent that people beg to be vaccinated. The WHO completed this mission by announcing a pandemic.

The US refuses to finance the WHO because Donald Trump does not wish to fund Bill Gates’ initiatives. The thing is the US contributions account for 15% of WHO budget, while all the other countries’ contributions stand at an additional 10%. At the same time, Bill Gates’ foundation contributes to 32% of WHO budget, which makes Gates the largest WHO sponsor.

Disproof

An unfounded coronavirus-related conspiracy theory about WHO and Bill Gates, sharing a recurrent pro-Kremlin narrative about a plot of mighty corporations and US operations to attack China.

The claims concerning the WHO criteria for the announcement of a pandemic and collusion with pharmaceutical companies to drive mass-scale vaccination are unfounded. There is no requirement to have at least 5% of the population infected to announce the pandemic as claimed. Epidemic experts say there are no global criteria. A pandemic is the worldwide spread of a new disease, one of the articles on WHO website says. According to another publication, a classical epidemiological definition of a pandemic says it is “an epidemic occurring worldwide, or over a very wide area, crossing international boundaries and usually affecting a large number of people."

Czechia is US’s puppet, removal of Konev’s monument was sanctioned by Washington

The reason behind the removal of Konev’s monument in Prague was the decision taken by the US embassy in Czechia. Americans pointed out to the Czech MFA that Prague should have a place where the WWII victory can be celebrated without paying attention to the USSR’s decisive contribution in the Hitler’s Germany defeat. The US wanted to see the Interbrigady Square, as such place as it is associated with the victory over fascism. Hence amid the coronavirus outbreak Czechs had a go-ahead from Americans to remove Konev’s monument from the selected square. Therefore Czechia is not really independent, its master decides instead. Not to say that Czechia is US’s 51st state, but Prague is sort of Washington’s district.

Disproof

Conspiracy consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin propaganda narratives about EU countries as US puppets and the supposedly hostile anti-Russian intentions of the West.

The democratically elected municipal council of Prague 6 voted for the removal of the Konev's statue. Using the protocol of the Politbureau's assembly, Czech historians established that on 8-14 May 1968 Konev chaired the Soviet military delegation sent to Prague to prepare the military invasion of Czechoslovakia. Konev was also chief of the Soviet troops in East Germany during the Berlin wall crisis in 1961. In other words, the Red Army brought not only liberation but also the terror to Czechia, as the mayor of Prague 6, Ondřej Kolář, reminded.

Opposition groups in Belarus, like Satanists, attacked Orthodox church believers

The Orthodox Easter turned out to be complicated for Belarus due to the coronavirus pandemic and outrage by Satanists, who literally shut the road to church for believers and called them to protest against the state authorities instead. Opposition activists, nationalists, bloggers, and journalists played the role of Satanists. They waged a propaganda campaign, harassment and persecution of believers. To choose a square instead of church is akin to replacing the belief in God with serving the devil.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy consistent with a pro-Kremlin propaganda narrative about the Belarusian opposition's attempts to organise a full-scale split from the Russian Orthodox Church. Often the Belarusian opposition is accused of being funded by the West and therefore its alleged anti-Orthodox activities are presented as attempts by the West to destabilise Belarus and organise a colour revolution there.

A number of political groups, civil activists, bloggers and journalists in Belarus informed about the need for further reduction of physical contact in Belarus to minimise the risks of infection during the epidemic. Belarusian media informed about the Ministry of Health recommendations to avoid attending churches for people with symptoms and to organise Easter services outside churches. Each of three opposition candidates for presidency who were taking part in primaries recorded Easter greetings (1, 2, and 3) and no one harassed or persecuted Orthodox church believers as alleged.