Disinfo: The US lies about the Russian presence in Libya to gain access to oil resources


US Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs, David Schenker, tried to justify the Turkish intervention in Libya misreporting on Russia’s role there. He expressed Washington’s concern on the “affluence of Russian military equipment, weapons and fighters of the private military company Wagner to Libya”, but he provided no confirmed source that proved the presence of the Russian military contingent in Libya. This rhetoric may be related to US interests in the oil production in the region, for which it is necessary to remove Russia’s influence in the Middle East.


The presence of Russian fighters of the Wagner Group has been confirmed not only by the Government of National Accord based in Tripoli but also by the US, the UK, the United Nations and the independent Russian outlet Meduza. An internal source in Wagner confirmed to Reuters that the group started recruiting Syrian fighters and sending them to Libya along with Russian private military contractors in 2019, a process that accelerated in the spring of 2020. In May 26, 2020, the US Command for Africa (AFRICOM) reported the presence of Russian warplanes in Libya, confirmed by satellite images (see here and here).

By accusing the US of having an interest in Libya’s oil while denying Russia’s presence in the country, the article adheres to a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative of accusing others of transgressions to deflect attention of its own misdeeds. You can see many other examples in our database, such as claims that Russia was expelled from G8 for no real reason, that not only there is no evidence of Russian meddling in the French, European and US elections but that it were foreign powers who interfered in Russian elections, that the presence of Russian mercenaries in Libya is just a rumour and Russia was never involved in Libya, or that by claiming that there are Russian warplanes in Libya, AFRICOM is waging a psy-op on US public.


  • Reported in: Issue 202
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 12/06/2020
  • Language/target audience: Spanish, Castilian
  • Country: Libya, Russia, US
  • Keywords: Anti-Russian, Natural resources, Foreign mercenaries


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.

see more

NAFTOGAZ stopped working near Crimea after the latter returned to Russia

.. this company (Naftogaz) stopped its work in fields near the peninsula, after Crimea returned to Russia.


Pro-Kremlin disinformation about the illegal annexation of Crimea, and trying to hide the real reason why Naftogaz stopped working near the peninsula.

After the illegal annexation of Crimea, Russia seized drilling rigs, gas fields, underground storage facilities, the fleet, apartments and other properties belonging to the state company Naftogaz, Ukraine responded with an international trial against Russia at the end of 2016.

EU sanctions are a result of the legal return of Crimea to Russia

… the sanctions imposed on Russia as a result of the Ukrainian crisis and the return of Crimea to Russia…

The return of Crimea in 2014, was a result of an acute political crisis in Ukraine, which came in response to the will expressed by the overwhelming majority of its population in a popular referendum, in full accordance with international law.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the illegal annexation of Crimea.

Crimea is a part of Ukraine and was illegally annexed by Russia. In 2014, Russian troops obliged the parliament of Crimea to organise a referendum, which was illegitimate under international law, and then formally annexed the peninsula and brought it under Russian territorial control.

Democratic Party planners use the strategy of “programmed chaos” in their own country

Strategists of the Democratic Party want to deliver a blow to Donald Trump, diverting the violence, riots, looting, anarchy and chaos that took over the US after the murder of George Floyd by policemen to prevent the president’s reelection. It is paradoxical that the US strategists and planners who promoted coups in 70 countries during the Cold War and later promoted ‘colour revolutions’ in Yugoslavia, Egypt, Georgia, Armenia, Ukraine and many other countries, decided, in their despair, to use the same strategy of ‘programmed chaos’ in their own country.


Conspiracy theory claiming that US racial justice protests after the death of George Floyd are actually a ‘colour revolution’. It is a recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative framing every protest in the world as staged from the outside.

The widespread protests against racial injustice and police brutality broke out in the US after the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis on the 25th of May, 2020. The protests followed several high-profile incidents involving African Americans and the police, invoking debates about racism in the US.