Disinfo: Ukrainian nationalists are fighting in Donbas with local residents

Summary

Ukrainian nationalists are not fighting the Russian Federation army in Donbas, as Kyiv claims, but with local residents, many of whom are citizens of the Russian Federation.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine, attempting to portray it as a civil war.

The war in eastern Ukraine is not a civil conflict, but an act of aggression by the Russian armed forces, that has continued since February 2014. The European Union stated in July 2014 that "arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation".

After the EU-Ukraine Summit HR/VP Josep Borrell said: "We fully support the sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of Ukraine. We will not recognise the illegal annexation of Crimea and we call on the full implementation of the Minsk agreements."

At the NATO Summit in Wales in September 2014, and at successive summits since then, allied leaders demanded that Russia refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border.

According to the US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Russian special forces and troops operated to mobilise, lead, equip and support separatist militias in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine from spring 2014 to the present, although their presence was denied by Moscow.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 205
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 15/07/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Eastern Ukraine, Civil war, War in Ukraine, Donbas

Disclaimer

Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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Disproof

This is a recurring disinformation narrative aiming to discredit the OPCW. The OPCW is an independent inter-governmental international organisation with 193 member states - including Russia.

The Investigation and Identification Team (IIT) was formed in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) as the voting results for the decision upon which its formation was based on were counted at 82 votes in favour and 24 against. The formation of the IIT was therefore adopted in complete compliance with the relevant standards of the CWC.

Ukraine is a terrorist state and must be eliminated

Ukraine, which carried out the genocide of the peoples of Donbas and Crimea, is a terrorist state and must be eliminated. Ukraine is waiting for the Nuremberg trials.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative that Ukraine is sabotaging peace in Donbas and about the war in Ukraine. It's also a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the annexation of Crimea.

Over the last year, Ukraine has made serious steps to resolve the conflict in Donbas peacefully. Ukraine initiated a Normandy Four meeting that was held on December 9, 2019. Ukraine agreed that a full and comprehensive ceasefire is necessary. The parties of the Normandy Summit also agreed to release captives on the principle "all for all" by December 2019. Three prisoner exchanges have been conducted, with the last one taking place during the COVID-19 lockdown. The law on special order of local self-government in certain areas of Donbas was extended for another year. A disengagement of troops was achieved in Zolote, Petrovske, and Stanytsia Luhanska. Ukraine also rebuilt a bridge in Stanytsia Luhanska that was destroyed by the pro-Russian militants in March 2015.

Ukraine committed a crime by attacking its citizens in Donbas in 2014

Ukraine’s attack in Donbas is a crime against Russia. Ukraine, having started the war against Donbas in 2014, committed a crime not only against its citizens but also against Russia, which had to urgently save compatriots who were in trouble.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine, attempting to portray it as a civil war.

The war in eastern Ukraine is an act of aggression by the Russian armed forces, that has continued since February 2014. 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, allied leaders also demanded that Russia refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border.