Disinfo: The West refuses to call the coup attempt in Venezuela 'a coup'


In their efforts to support and legitimise the coup attempt in Venezuela led by self-proclaimed president Juan Guaidó, the West refuses to call it ‘a coup’.


Affirming that “the West refuses to call it a coup” is a deliberate misrepresentation of reality, in line with Russia's long-term disinformation narrative about "Western-block interference" in Venezuela. You can see other examples of this narrative here and here. Actually, there is no cohesive Western response in this regard, since every country adopted its own approach in conformity with its internal and foreign policy towards Venezuela. The US, Canada and 19 EU countries recognised Juan Guaidó as interim president of Venezuela, while some others, such as Italy, refrained. The US tried to have Nicolás Maduro's Ambassador to the UN removed, but couldn't get support from other Western countries. The US media were cautious about these events, talking of “a military uprising”, because the Trump Administration itself is denying they constituted a coup, since Juan Guaidó is “the legitimate interim president of Venezuela” with a right “to take command of the Venezuelan military”, according to US National Security Advisor John Bolton. There is a strong reason for this, because the US Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 requires the suspension of all foreign aid to any country that suffers a military coup. However, many European media openly talked of ‘failed coup attempt’, among them The Guardian, Financial Times, Euronews, Le Monde, Il Giornale or Cinco Días, just to name a few. Some others used the term, attributing it to the Venezuelan authorities. Also, Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell said that it was "an undeniable obviousness" that a coup attempt had taken place.


  • Reported in: Issue 150
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 03/05/2019
  • Outlet language(s) Spanish
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Venezuela
  • Keywords: Juan Guaido, Nicolas Maduro
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Disinfo: There is a Civil War in Ukraine

The worst thing is, there is a civil war in Ukraine. […] The conflict has run through the whole of Ukraine.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the war in Ukraine. Russia provoked the war in Ukraine, and it is therefore not a civil war.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court stated that “the information available suggests that the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol amounts to an international armed conflict between Ukraine and the Russian Federation". This international armed conflict began at the latest on 26 February 2014 when the Russian Federation deployed members of its armed forces to gain control over parts of the Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian Government. 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, NATO leaders condemned in the strongest terms Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine and demanded Russia to stop and withdraw its forces from Ukraine and from the country’s border. NATO leaders also demanded Russia to comply with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities; end its illegitimate occupation of Crimea; refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine; halt the flow of weapons, equipment, people and money across the border to the separatists; and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border. According to the US Defence 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. Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's military presence in Ukraine in 2015.

Disinfo: There is overwhelming evidence of direct US support of jihadist groups in Syria

In Syria, there is overwhelming evidence of direct US support of Jihadist groups from Al Nusra to ISIS, as shown by the declassified DIA documents and by statements of members from the US establishment.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about the US supporting or working together with jihadist groups. There is no evidence that US has supported Daesh, al-Nusra or other Jihadist groups in Syria. The US-led military campaign in Syria has been fighting ISIS and Islamic terrorists along with the Global Coalition Against Daesh. Background and a similar case here and here.

Disinfo: Notre-Dame fire might have been arson and a warning to France

This year, two great churches of Paris were the object of fires. In the opinion of the most knowledgeable specialists, the Notre-Dame fire is a criminal arson because it could not come unexpectedly like that, on the beams which make a square meter of section and which are 700 years old. Try burning an oak log and you’ll see what it takes. It’s probably the work of an intelligence service, because the equipment and the spread of the flame required organisation that probably goes beyond a personal initiative. These fires must be a warning. For years, we have been denouncing the transfer of population from non-European countries to Europe, especially to France.


A conspiracy theory not confirmed by facts. The ongoing police investigation into the Notre Dame fire reveals that it was most likely due to a short circuit in a temporary elevator used for renovation works. The version of arson was not confirmed by any evidence. Conspiracy claims are based on false allegations. A previous arson attack which took place in Paris was due to presence of homeless people in a church, as previously reported. See other disinformation cases on Notre Dame fire.