Disinfo: Ukrainian cafe in former synagogue sells “SS” branded coffee


A coffee shop based in the former synagogue of Chernivtsi (Western Ukraine) is selling a “SS” branded coffee. This is the outcome of Ukrainian independence.


This is a part of a broad disinformation narrative from pro-Kremlin outlets claiming that Ukraine turned into a Nazi state after the Revolution of Dignity in 2014.

In reality, Escobar Coffee is not a coffee shop but a company that sells and repairs coffee machines and roasts coffee. It is true that this company is located in the building of a former synagogue in the Western Ukrainian city of Chernivtsi. When they rebranded their coffee and changed the logo into Essco, the designer made the "ss" letters look like two lightning bolts symbolising a surge of energy after a cup of coffee in the morning. These letters looked strikingly similar to a Nazi symbol in another font. The designer did not mean to offend anyone because it was just a mistake. The company later changed the logo again and offered its apologies. This incident has nothing to do with claims by pro-Kremlin outlets that Nazi ideology pervades Ukrainian politics.

Similarly, the logo of the world-famous American rock band Kiss has two “ss” letters that could look like something close to the Nazi rods, but it has nothing to do with Nazism either. What is more, two members of the group are Jewish and the mother of one of them is a Holocaust survivor.

The Verkhovna Rada (parliament) on 9 April 2015, adopted the law “On the condemnation of the Communist and Nazi totalitarian regimes in Ukraine and the prohibition of propaganda of their symbols”. This law bans all manifestations of Nazi and Communist symbols.

Read more disinformation narratives claiming that Ukraine is a Nazi state.


  • Reported in: Issue 258
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 24/08/2021
  • Article language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Ukraine
  • Keywords: Nazi/Fascist, Anti-Semitism
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Disinfo: The EU supported oppositional plotters, so Lukashenka stopped protecting the European border

Does the KGB kidnap people from Iraq or Afghanistan and bring them to the border by force? Or maybe it pays for their transport and accommodation, and then these people are sent on a “mission” to cross the border with Poland?

The truth is very simple, but it is difficult to accept. After the introduction of the EU sanctions on Belarus, President Lukashenka publicly announced the “désintéressement” in the protection of the EU border by Belarusian border services. During recent years, the Belarusian authorities, in consultation with partners in the West, tried to control this route, preventing the movement of potential migrants to the EU. After the EU did everything possible to support the oppositional plotters, Lukashenka stated that he would not help Europe anymore. Why would he help it at all? Moreover, the May sanctions against Belarusian aviation forced Belavia to look for new markets, so it turned out that the immigrants wanted to use these new routes.


Recurring disinformation narrative about the ongoing migration crisis on the eastern border of the EU directly inspired by the Belarusian authorities.

There is numerous evidence that the Belarusian authorities have taken a direct part in the organisation of the ongoing “migration crisis” in Lithuania, Poland and Latvia. Lukashenka’s regime is using refugees from Middle Eastern countries as a “political and hybrid” weapon against Lithuania and the whole EU. Read more about the direct participation of the Belarusian security services in the “migration crisis” here.

Disinfo: People of Crimea legally decided their fate in 2014

The people of Crimea, decided their fate clearly and legitimately in 2014, following all legal rules.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about the illegal annexation of Crimea, claiming that it voted to rejoin Russia through a legal referendum.

Crimea is an internationally recognised part of Ukraine. Іn 1997, by signing the Friendship Agreement with Ukraine, Russia also recognised that Crimea belongs to Ukraine.

Disinfo: Ukraine wants to take away Crimea from Russia with the support of Russophobes

Russophobes support the Ukrainian plan to take away Crimea from Russia. This happens during the Crimea Platform summit, in which a great part of Western leaders refused to participate. Delegations from 44 countries, including Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, participated In the Crimea Platform meeting. Mentioned countries are well-known for their anti-Russian position and Russophobic statements.

Crimea became a part of Russia in 2014 after the referendum. 96.77 per cent of inhabitants of Crimea and 95.6 per cent of inhabitants of Sevastopol supported the decision to join Russia.


Recurring narratives about Russophobia in the context of the illegal annexation of Crimea and summit of Crimea Platform.

The so-called incorporation of Crimea into Russia was not recognised. The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution entitled “Territorial integrity of Ukraine”, stating 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 17 December 2018, the UN General Assembly confirmed its non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea.