DISINFO: West wages deliberate campaign against Sputnik V
  • Outlet: iz.ru (archived)*
  • Date of publication: August 07, 2021
  • Article language(s): Russian
  • Reported in: Issue 254
  • Countries / regions discussed: Russia, Slovakia, Brazil
coronavirus Sputnik V Anti-Russian Russophobia

DISINFO: West wages deliberate campaign against Sputnik V


The West is waging a deliberate campaign against Russia’s Sputnik V anti-COVID vaccine. It refuses to admit that Russia’s research can help ensure health and well-being for the whole of mankind.


This is a recurring disinformation narrative from pro-Kremlin outlets, trying to portray Russia's Sputnik V vaccine as the best in the world and accusing the West of having a prejudiced attitude towards it.

Russia's claim about the allegedly high efficacy of Sputnik V is based on an article from The Lancet which was published in February 2021. It asserted that Sputnik V’s efficacy was 91.6 per cent without considerable side effects. The article seemed to be a study carried out mostly by Russian experts. There are some doubts as to Sputnik V’s efficacy, especially where the trial procedures are concerned (see here and here).

The World Vaccine Congress Washington 2021 recognised Moderna as the world’s best anti-COVID vaccine, which made Sputnik V’s developers raise questions and call the decision ‘a strange choice’. Contrary to what is claimed, this choice was not biased. Sputnik V does have some serious disadvantages, which has made several countries reject it. Brazil rejected Sputnik V for safety concerns in April 2021 and Slovakia sold most Russian Sputnik V coronavirus vaccines back to the country of origin in July 2021. Argentina's President Alberto Fernandez tested positive for COVID in April 2021 two months after being jabbed with Sputnik V, which was negative publicity for the Russian vaccine.

There is neither Russophobia nor any political bias whatsoever in the way the European Medicines Agency (EMA) is dealing with the Sputnik V vaccine. EMA and EU leaders have publicly stated they will welcome Sputnik V if it meets the applied standards for vaccines. A rolling review by EMA is in progress and EMA Executive Director Emer Cooke said in March 2021 she hoped that the Sputnik V vaccine would be approved.

See more disinformation cases claiming that the West is trying to discredit Sputnik V for political reasons.


Related disinfo cases


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.

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