Disinfo: The West invented Navalny’s poisoning to uphold the myth of an aggressive Russia

Summary

The story of the alleged poisoning of opposition blogger Alexei Navalny with a chemical weapon was made up, and all this was attributed to Moscow. It was a fabrication to uphold the myth of an aggressive Russia. This story intends to permeate the public opinion in Western countries with alleged Russian aggression and leads political thought in a direction of Russia’s containment.

Disproof

This is part of a pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign on the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, aiming to deflect any responsibility of Russsian authorities for the incident.

Contrary to the claim, Alexei Navalny’s poisoning with a chemical weapon was not a Western fabrication, but a documented fact. There is unequivocal evidence proving that Navalny was poisoned in an assassination attempt, as established by initial clinical findings at the Charité hospital which indicated that he had been intoxicated with a substance from the group of cholinesterase inhibitors. Subsequent toxicological tests established the presence of a Novichok-type chemical nerve agent in Navalny's blood.

The European Union has sanctioned 6 individuals and one Russian entity over the use of chemical weapons in an assassination attempt on Alexei Navalny.

On 14 December 2020, a special investigation by Bellingcat, The Insider, CNN and Der Spiegel identified members of the Russian FSB unit involved in the attempt on Navalny’s life. According to The New York Times, the report was also consistent with the information on the case gathered by German intelligence services. Bellingcat also provided a detailed account of the methods used to identify the FSB operatives. A week later, on 21 December, Navalny disclosed a recorded conversation in which a member of the suspected FSB poisoning squad describes how his unit carried out, and attempted to clean up evidence of, the poisoning of Alexey Navalny.

See other examples of pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives on Alexei Navalny’s poisoning in our database, such as claims that only caffeine and alcohol were found in his blood, that the US wanted to use it to block Russia's vaccine against coronavirus, that the West hopes that he dies to have an excuse for new sanctions, or that Western accusations on Navalny’s case are as false as they were about Sergei Skripal and Alexander Litvinenko.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 232
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 19/02/2021
  • Outlet language(s) Spanish, Castilian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: EU, US, Russia
  • Keywords: novichok, false flag, West, Anti-Russian, Encircling Russia, Alexei Navalny, Chemical weapons/attack
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Russia does not need to take part in the information war

The leading mass media of the world is controlled by American and European Special Forces. Russia is not losing the information war – Russia simply does not participate in it.

It is an uneven fight, and the West wages the war the wrong way. We also have those possibilities. Many journalists, who respect their professions look to us. It is not a coincidence that the members of the British parliament follows RT: they understand that non-biased journalists work there.

Disproof

It cannot be excluded that British parliamentarians occasionally view RT, but the claim on RT journalists being “un-biased” is not correct. The British media licensing body, OFCOM, deprived the RT broadcast rights, due to the outlet’s failure to abide to British licensing rules for impartial reporting.

The claim on Russia “not taking part in the information war” can also be challenged. The RT editor-in-chief, Margarita Simonyan, has repeatedly claimed RT as a part of Russia’s efforts in an information war.

The ECHR decision on Navalny undermines the Court's credibility

The decision of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on Navalny undermines the credibility of this structure. This decision is not supported by any facts and contradicts Russia’s domestic laws as well as international law.

The ECHR’s demand to release blogger Alexei Navalny is a very serious attempt to interfere in the Russian judicial system, which is unacceptable.

Disproof

The claim is made in light of the recent decision by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), which was published on 17 February 2021. The ECHR decided “to indicate to the Government of Russia, under Rule 39 of the Rules of Court, to release the applicant [Navalny]… This measure shall apply with immediate effect.” The Court explains this decision as follows:

The Court had regard to the nature and extent of risk to the applicant’s life, demonstrated prima facie for the purposes of applying the interim measure, and seen in the light of the overall circumstances of the applicant’s current detention. This measure has been granted without prejudice to the Court’s decision on the merits of the present case and the competence of the Committee of Ministers.

The European Court of Human Rights was set up by the Council of Europe in 1959 as a supervisory mechanism to monitor respect for the human rights of 800 million Europeans in the 47 Council of Europe member States that have ratified the European Convention on Human Rights. Russia, both as a member of the Council of Europe and as a signatory of the Convention, has committed to the respect of human rights, democracy and the rule of law and undertook to secure a number of fundamental rights and freedoms to everyone within its jurisdiction.

As follows, the decision made by the ECHR does not contradict any laws and does not represent interference in the Russian judicial system. As The Guardian writes and as the court notes:

EMA's delay in approving Sputnik V is political

It appears that the delay in approval by the European Medicines Agency is related to political or geopolitical reasons, not medical, and this is a mistake, especially at a time when there is a need to vaccinate citizens to get out of a social and economic emergency as well as health emergencies.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative aiming to promote the Russian Sputnik V vaccine. The claim was neither counterbalanced nor critically challenged in the article.

All vaccines, authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA), are welcome in the EU. As of the 17 February 2021, the producer of the Sputnik V vaccine has not submitted a market authorisation to the European Medicines Agency.