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Ukraine's foreign relations since 2014 are built around the myth of Russian aggression in Donbas

Summary of Disinformation

Ukraine’s whole diplomatic strategy since 2014 has been built around the mythology of war with Russia. The Ukrainian idea is to increase external pressure on Russia to bring it to the negotiating table and to abandon talks about bringing special status to Ukraine’s eastern regions.

The real goal behind Zelenskyy’s recent visits to Germany and France was not to present a new plan of peaceful resolution of the Donbas conflict, because such a plan does not exist. The visits were intended to find out if Western partners are still ready to assist Ukraine in the international legalisation of the Donbas conflict as ‘Russian aggression.’

Disproof

This claim is a conspiracy consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about the war in Ukraine - claiming that Russia is not responsible for it - and ungrounded anti-Russian actions by Western countries. It disregards the extensive factual evidence confirming ongoing Russian military presence in Donbas. Prior debunks of this narrative can be found here and here.

Concerning Zelenskyy's visits to Germany and France, the sides have agreed on the need to restart peace efforts, including the so-called Normandy format, which brings together Ukraine, Russia, Germany, and France. Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Angela Merkel were in agreement "that until progress has been made, sanctions on Russia cannot be lifted," stressed the German Chancellor.

Western countries' policy towards Russia is a consequence of Russia's annexation of Crimea and Russia-backed armed formations in Donbas, which violate international law. Since March 2014, the EU has progressively imposed restrictive measures against Russia in response to its territorial violations against Ukraine. More on EU’s restrictive measures against Russia is available here.

See an earlier disinformation case alleging that the rumours about Russian military presence in Donbas come from linguistic misunderstanding.

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Reported in: Issue 156
Date: 20.06.2019
Language: Belarus
Country: Russia, The West, Ukraine, Germany, France
Keywords: Volodymyr Zelensky, Eastern Ukraine, Anti-Russian, War in Ukraine, Donbas, Conspiracy, Ukrainian statehood
Outlet where the disinformation appeared: Sputnik Belarus
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