Disinfo: Ukrainians were never unequal while in the Russian Empire

Summary

There was not a single moment in Ukrainian history during the Russian Empire, when Ukrainians were unequal, circumvented or oppressed. Ukraine has no understanding of sacred power, the sacredness of the country. Ukrainians do not understand anything about the country, nor about the state, nor about the people.

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative designed to denigrate the history of Ukraine, Ukrainian statehood and its independence. When Ukrainian lands became part of the Russian Empire, they formally lost all traces of their national distinctiveness. The territories were reorganised into regular Russian provinces administered by governors appointed from St. Petersburg. In religious policy, the Tsarist regime promoted the elimination of Ukrainian peculiarities. Although the largely Polish Roman Catholic Church was allowed to continue, Catherine launched a program of administrative conversion of Ukrainians from the Uniate Church. The anti-Uniate campaign was partially reversed by her immediate successors but was renewed with vigour by Nicholas I. In 1863 the minister of the interior, Petr Valuev, banned virtually all publications in Ukrainian, with the exception of belles lettres. The ban was reinforced by a secret imperial decree, the Ems Ukaz, of Aleksandr II in 1876 and extended to the publication of belles lettres in Ukrainian, the importation of Ukrainian-language books, and public readings and stage performances in the language. The prohibition even extended to education. The other claims about the statehood of Ukraine are also groundless. Ukraine is recognised in international law as a sovereign nation-state, with its own flag, nationality, language and with a democratically-elected president and parliament. The history of Ukraine dates back to the era of the Kyivan Rus’ in the 9th-13th centuries. A national movement developed during the ages while Ukraine was ruled by Russia; Ukrainian nationalists took part in the revolutionary movements that led to the demise of the Russian empire.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 206
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 14/07/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: Russian superiority, Historical revisionism, Russian expansionism, Ukrainian statehood
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Disproof

The recurring pro-Kremlin propaganda narratives about the Western attempts to organise a colour revolution in Belarus. There is no evidence that the West is preparing a so-called colour revolution in Belarus. On 3 June, Brussels, Washington and London issued a joint statement calling for free and fair elections in the country, emphasising “that no politically motivated restrictive measures should prevent potential candidates from fulfilling the registration procedure.” “Media freedom and the right of peaceful assembly are essential to legitimate elections,” the diplomatic missions said the same week that a visa facilitation agreement entered into force between Belarus and the EU. See earlier disinformation cases alleging that the Belarusian opposition, civic activists and independent journalists make kill lists for Western security bodies, that the pro-Western Belarusian opposition prepares 'kill lists' and genocide, the US global “Anaconda” strategy is to limit the living space of geopolitical opponents, and that the West's objective is to encircle Russia entirely thanks to the "Anaconda ring" and "Great Turan" doctrines.

Ukraine needs war in Donbas to receive financial aid from the IMF

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Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the war in Ukraine, aiming to portray the conflict as Ukraine's civil war. The IMF promotes international financial stability, monetary cooperation, employment and sustainable economic growth, facilitates international trade and helps to reduce global poverty. Cooperation between Ukraine and the IMF is based on bilateral agreements and a commitment of the Ukrainian authorities to implement reforms necessary for the development of the state. In the latest memorandum, agreed in June 2020, Ukraine and the IMF set out the four priorities: to mitigate the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis, to ensure continued central bank independence and a flexible exchange rate, to safeguard financial stability, and to move forward with key governance and anti-corruption measures. See earlier disinformation cases on Ukraine-IMF cooperation in our database: that Ukraine agrees to carry out genocide of Ukrainian citizens in exchange for IMF loans, that the memorandum with IMF is putting Ukraine under external control, that IMF policy in Ukraine aims to turn Ukrainians into the cheap labour force, or that Ukraine spends half of its budget to pay debts.

Europe has always considered Ukraine an anti-Russian project

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Disproof

This is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russophobia in Ukraine and Ukraine's statehood. It is a conspiracy theory without any evidence. Ukraine is recognised in international law as a sovereign nation-state, with its own flag, nationality, language and with a democratically-elected president and parliament. The EU and the US support the democratic development of Ukraine in accordance with the UN Charter’s principles of non-interference into internal affairs and respect towards territorial integrity and political independence. Ukraine is not an anti-Russian project. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Ukraine and Russia established diplomatic relations and signed a number of important treaties. On 31 May 1997, the countries signed a comprehensive Friendship Treaty. As a result, Russia recognised Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. It also recognised that Crimea belongs to Ukraine. Read similar cases: Ukraine wants to preserve itself as an anti-Russian project, Ukraine is an anti-Russian project of the CIA.