Disinfo: WHO says the Russian "Sputnik-V" vaccine is safe and effective

Summary

The World Health Organization thanks Russia for the Sputnik V vaccine, which is safe and effective.

Disproof

The statement is distorted. In September 2020, Hans Kluge, Director of the European Regional Office of the World Health Organization (WHO), during a country visit to Russia "commended the Russian Federation for its COVID-19 vaccine research and development efforts, and for sharing information with WHO as part of the global effort to find a safe and effective vaccine," as stated on the WHO Europe website. Hans Kluge's message was distorted, since he did not comment on the effectiveness of the "Sputnik V" vaccine, but praised Russia's efforts in research and development of a COVID-19 vaccine. In a comment for the Stopfals.md, the press office of the World Health Organization mentions that “during his visit to Moscow, Dr. Kluge stressed the importance of expanding the collaboration between the WHO and the Russian Federation. (...) The exchange of information on new knowledge related to COVID-19, including the results of research and development studies on vaccines and / or any other medical products, is essential to provide a comprehensive response to this pandemic." In the same reply, the WHO press office also stated that: “To date, there is no vaccine to prevent COVID-19, but work is being done around the world to find one that is effective and safe. Of the more than 200 vaccines under development, more than 10 are being tested in humans, and a few will soon enter phase III." For further debunking, please see Stopfals.md. See here more narratives claiming that Russia combats coronavirus more effectively than other countries.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 214
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 21/09/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Countries and/or Regions discussed in the disinformation: Russia
  • Keywords: coronavirus, vaccination, WHO
see more

Russia’s Avangard missile system can devastate US defences, The National Interest says

Russia’s Avangard missile system can devastate US defences, The National Interest says. This US magazine, specialised in security, published a text by publicist Peter Suciu about what the creation of the Russian hypersonic unit Avangard means for the US. The author of the publication mentions that Avangard has hypersonic speed and is able to maneuver in the atmosphere. It quotes China’s official stance, that the Avangard equipped with nuclear heads can “devastate” US defences.

Disproof

This is a deliberate distortion of the original article in The National Interest, titled “Is the Russian Avangard Hypersonic ICBM a Serious Threat?”, where author Peter Suciu says that it is “reported [for the Avangard] to have both hypersonic speed and an ability to fly a ‘maneuvering’ flight path through the atmosphere”, but, contrary to the claim, he doesn’t affirm it himself. Also, the alleged quote about China’s official stance is also manipulated: it is a reference to a previous article in The Eurasian Times where China praises the capabilities of the missile, but where the description of its “devastating” effects is done by a Russian military official, Major General Vladimir Popov, not by the Chinese authorities. Pro-Kremlin media frequently resort to this manipulative technique of quoting sentences from serious publications and then introducing a distorted message as if it was part of the original article, in this case to promote a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Russia’s military might. See other examples in our database, such as false claims that British outlet The Guardian pointed to ruling elite as the real instigators of the racial crisis in the US and reported that the EU remained silent as the Europeans couldn’t buy food for the first time in 75 years; that Newsweek magazine explained how the US coup in Iran will end; that Soros’ structures in the media and think tanks saw an opportunity in the coronavirus pandemic to attack the “bad guys”; that the US National Counterintelligence and Security Centre put Wikileaks at the same threat level as jihadist organisations in its last report; or that the US special envoy for Syria admitted that Washington’s goal was to defend terrorists from Russian attacks.

Ugly commercial interests are behind the criticism of the Russian COVID 19 vaccine

There are very ugly commercial interests behind the criticism of the Russian vaccine. This was understandable even before the registration of the vaccine when a number of special services of foreign states accused Russia of allegedly stealing its vaccine. It became clear that this is not the case, because our vaccine is very different from others and much better. But a series of attacks began. Pharmaceutical Association of Western Companies began to declare that the vaccine could not be registered until the end of Phase 3 clinical trials. But now we see that China registered the vaccine before the end of phase 3, the UAE as well as the USA and Britain announced plans to register their vaccines before the end of phase 3.

Disproof

On Aug 11, 2020, Russia declared it is the first country in the world to approve a vaccine against coronavirus. Nonetheless, there are widespread concerns that the approval is premature. At the time of approval, the vaccine had not even started phase 3 trials, nor had any results on the earlier stage trials been published, worlds scientists said on the Lancet. WHO expressed concerns as for preternatural registration of vaccine. Following the criticism, Russia published its response on the Lancet. Then international experts expressed concerns about statistical anomalies revealed during the publication of the results of the first and second phases of clinical trials of the Russian vaccine. Publishing their clarifications, Russia did not address the criticism, in essence, analysed Deutsche Welle. The narrative that any criticism of Russian achievements is due to competition reasons, is a recurrent conspiracy. The statement that democratic countries - US, UK also want to approve their vaccines before the end of clinical trials, as Russia did, is untrue. As for September 20, 2020, the CEO of Moderna, American company developing its own vaccine, mentioned in the disinformation report, expressed no such plans. In August 2020, the American, British and Canadian governments said that Russian hackers are attempting to steal coronavirus vaccine research. At that, no evidence had emerged that data was stolen. There was likely little immediate damage to global public health, cybersecurity experts said.

Antifa are burning their own country

Not only Trump supporters, but also many apolitical Americans are convinced that the forests were set on fire by Antifa militias, sponsored by the Democratic Party. This explains the unprecedented scale of fires this year in the US.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory and recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the US Democratic Party. There is no evidence that Antifa or members of the Democratic Party are deliberately starting forest fires. One of the latest fires in California that has burned more than 7,000 acres (2,800 hectares) was caused by a firework at a “gender-reveal party”, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) has found. In a statement released late on September 9, the department said: “The fire began at 10.23 am on September 5, 2020 in the El Dorado Ranch Park in Yucaipa,” before spreading north. Climate change is also making the situation with the wildfires in the US worse. "Wildfire activity in the United States is changing dangerously, particularly in the west, as conditions become hotter and drier due to climate change," the Union of Concerned Scientists says.