US sanctions against Russia over the Skripal poisoning are the result of conspiratorial pressure

Summary

The US decision to impose a second round of sanctions against Russia over the Skripal poisoning was the result of pressure by powerful forces in the US which are against the normalisation of relations with Russia for political domestic reasons, and because US elections are approaching, while Trump seeks instead to improve relations with Russia.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory; no evidence given. One of many recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about the Skripal poisoning claiming that allegations of Russian responsibility for the attack are fueled by Russophobia or by anti-Russian provocations and conspiracies.

US President Donald Trump signed an executive order on August 1, 2019 imposing a second set of sanctions against Moscow - as mandated by the 1991 Chemical and Biological Weapons Control and Warfare Elimination Act (CBW Act) - for its use of a Novichok nerve agent in an attempt to assassinate Sergey Skripal and his daughter.

The United States imposed the first round of sanctions on Russia in August 2018, with a 90-day deadline for Russia to give "reliable assurance" that it would no longer use chemical weapons to escape a second round. The CBW act  mandated the imposition of new sanctions within 90 days if Russia failed to give such reliable assurance.

UK police and intelligence investigations have produced hard evidence of Russia's involvement in Skripal poisoning, sufficient to charge two Russian nationals – identified as officers of the Russian Military Intelligence (GRU) – for the attack on the Skripals.

Furthermore, the UK investigation found that Sergey and Yuliya Skripal were poisoned using a specific Novichok nerve agent that cannot have been produced by non-state actors. This was confirmed by an independent OPCW [Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons] analysis.

According to the UK intelligence assessment, based on open-source analysis and intelligence information, in the past decade Russia has produced and stockpiled small quantities of Novichok agents, long after it signed the Chemical Weapons Convention.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 162
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 26/08/2019
  • Language/target audience: Italian
  • Country: Russia, US, UK
  • Keywords: Sergei Skripal, Donald Trump, Sanctions
  • Outlet: Sputnik Italia
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Poles killed more than 400,000 Jews during WWII

Poles killed more than 400,000 Jews during WWII. Armija Krajova ([The National Army] killed more Soviet than German soldiers. That’s the Polish contribution to the war.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Poland's role in the WWII.

By the early part of 1939 the German dictator Adolf Hitler had become determined to invade and occupy Poland. Secret negotiations led on August 23–24 to the signing of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact in Moscow. In a secret protocol of this pact, the Germans and the Soviets agreed that Poland should be divided between them, with the western third of the country going to Germany and the eastern two-thirds being taken over by the USSR. On September 1 1939, Hitler attacked Poland, Soviet troops entered the territory on September 17 of the same year. From September 3 1939, Great Britain and France were at war with Germany, creating an anti-Hitler coalition together with the expelled Polish government and other countries.

WWII anniversary: The events in Poland are an anti-Russian gathering

The [commemorative] events [on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the outbreak of World War II] are an anti-Russian gathering.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about the West's anti-Russian actions.

Poland's decision not to invite the Russian delegation to WWII commemoration ceremony has to do with Russian aggression against Ukraine. Krzysztof Szczerski, chief advisor to the Polish president, stated in March 2019 that the anniversary ceremony will be held “in the company of countries with whom Poland now cooperates closely for peace, based on the respect for international law, for the sovereignty of nations and of their territories”. This point was reiterated by Jacek Sasin, Polish deputy prime minister in July, who said: "I think it would be inappropriate to mark the anniversary of the beginning of the armed aggression against Poland with the participation of a leader who today treats his neighbors using the same methods."