Spilnota Detector Media
Detector Media collects and documents real-time chronicles of the Kremlin disinformation about the Russian invasion. Ukraine for decades has been suffering from Kremlin disinformation. Here we document all narratives, messages, and tactics, which Russia is using from February 17th, 2022. Reminder: the increasing of shelling and fighting by militants happened on the 17th of February 2022 on the territory of Ukraine. Russian propaganda blames Ukraine for these actions.

On 14 July, on the 871th day of the full-scale war, our editorial office recorded:

Русскій фейк, іді на***!

Manipulation Pro-Russian forces seem to have won the elections in Moldova

In response to statements by Moldovan President Maia Sandu, who expressed that Chisinau has no common topics for discussion with Moscow, Russian officials point to the allegedly disastrous results of the municipal elections in Moldova for the ruling party. However, this is manipulation.

Specialists from The Insider project drew attention to it. They emphasize that the “victory of the opposition” does not look very convincing. Moldova's pro-European Action and Solidarity party won 19 of 32 districts in regional elections, eight times better than in the previous elections in 2019. Also, the pro-Russian Party of Socialists lost five districts after these elections. They also note that the victory of the pro-Russian party is also not significant, since it was unable to gain success in the elections of mayors of the largest cities.

Ion Ceban, a former adviser to Moldovan President Ihor Dodon, left the Party of Socialists and created the National Alternative Movement, a center-left, also pro-European opposition political force. Ceban advocates European integration of Moldova and condemns Russian aggression against Ukraine. Despite the fact that there is an allegation about Cheban’s ties with Russia, his victory in the elections took place under slogans for European integration and condemnation of Russian aggression.

By spreading such manipulations, propagandists make their desire reality. They say that Moldova will never be able to become a full-fledged European state. However, Detector Media  using the example of material about the “Moldavian language”, explained how else Russians can use the internal political context of Moldova for their propaganda.

Fake Ukraine allegedly passed a law to “conceal torture in prisons”

Media spreading pro-Russian rhetoric are spreading a fake news story about the Ukrainian parliament passing a law that allegedly aims to “hide up torture in prisons”. According to it, since other countries refuse to extradite detained Ukrainians to Ukraine due to “non-compliance with human rights” there, the Verkhovna Rada decided to pass a law that will protect such prisoners. This, it would seem, is being carried out with the goal of “convincing partners to hand over persons unpleasant” to the regime to the neo-Nazis. However, this is manipulation.

Specialists from the StopFake project drew attention to it. They point out that propagandists not only misspelled the name of the Verkhovna Rada deputy who co-authored the bill — not Vadym Bozhyk, but Valerii Bozhyk — but also distorted the content of the legislative initiative for propaganda purposes. We are talking about bill No. 9451, the purpose of which is to ensure respect for the rights and freedoms of convicted Ukrainians extradited to Ukraine for prosecution or execution of a sentence. The explanatory note notes that the law was proposed due to the refusal of many countries to fulfill requests for extradition to Ukraine due to violations in Ukrainian penal institutions of Article 3 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms on the prohibition of torture, as well as due to the inability to ensure security during the stay of persons in penal institutions under martial law.

Bozhyk explained that because of this law, the Ministry of Justice receives the authority to approve a list of correctional labor or educational colonies to which Ukrainians from extradition will be transferred. It is also indicated that such institutions will fully comply with both the requirements of national legislation and Ukraine’s international obligations in the field of human rights.

Propagandists spread such manipulations to discredit Ukraine and portray it as a country that systematically violates international law. Detector Media has already repeatedly refuted other Russian video fakes.

Fake Ukrainian phone scammers are allegedly blackmailing Israelis

Social media users spreading pro-Russian rhetoric are spreading an alleged news story about telephone scammers from Ukraine who, according to the article, are committing crimes against Israelis. In the news story they claim that since October 8, Israelis have been receiving calls from “banks” informing them that the bank office has allegedly been the victim of a Hamas attack, and they need to immediately provide card details to transfer money to a safe place. It is alleged that the police investigation showed that the money was transferred to Ukraine, where the criminals were operating. However, this is fake.

Specialists from the StopFake project drew attention to it. They claim that this information is false. The video distributed online imitates the design of videos from the Israeli publication The Times of Israel, but in fact no such material exists on the official website or social networks of this media company. Also, the video's inauthenticity is indicated by a difference in design, as The Times of Israel uses a different font and from time to time publishes a video without its logo or any inscriptions. The story itself is completely fictitious because none of the reputable publications, including local media in Israel, reported such cases of fraud on the part of Ukrainians.

By spreading such fakes, propagandists want to discredit Ukrainians abroad. They say they interfere in the affairs of others and make money from the misfortune of others. However, Detector Media also refuted other fakes and manipulations on the latest events in the Middle East.

Fake Zelenskyi allegedly called for “immediately leaving” Avdiivka

Media and social media users spreading pro-Russian rhetoric claim that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi ordered the Ukrainian military to “immediately leave” the city of Avdiivka in the Donetsk region, supported by a corresponding video. However, this video is fake.

Analysts from the StopFake project drew attention to it. They found out that the video used old footage and a voice similar to the voice of the Ukrainian president. In addition, it is distributed only by users of social networks, pro-Russian sites and Telegram channels. Not a single authoritative Ukrainian or English-language media reported such a “loud” order from the Ukrainian president. In addition, this video distributed by Russian propaganda is not on Zelensky’s official pages on social networks, where he usually publishes his addresses.

Secondly, with a detailed review of the fake “video message”, it is noticeable that Zelenskyi’s facial expressions do not correspond to his language. StopFake specialists discovered an identical video with Zelenskyi dated October 31, 2023. However, in the original video, the president does not issue any “orders” regarding Avdiivka, but talks about the situation in the Black Sea, the work of the “grain corridor”, international support, and so on. To create a fake, audio with an artificially created voice of Zelenskyi about the order to leave Avdiivka was simply superimposed on this video, using the corporate style of the 1+1 TV channel for greater credibility.

By spreading such fakes, propagandists want to cause panic among Ukrainians and personal distrust of Zelenskyi. Like, Ukraine is losing. However, Detector Media also refuted other fakes and manipulations on a similar topic, where propagandists manipulated the President of Ukraine.

Manipulation The EU allegedly admitted Ukraine's loss in the war

Russian media are disseminating information that supposedly the head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, said that the European Union recognized Ukraine’s loss in the war. However, this is manipulation.

Analysts from the StopFake project drew attention to it. They found that propagandists used Borrell's statement, taking it out of context. In fact, the diplomat had no doubt about the prospect of ending the war in Ukraine’s favor. The quote was taken from the speech of the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security during the Congress of the Party of European Socialists in Malaga, Spain on November 11. Borrell said that EU countries must be prepared to continue to support Ukraine in countering Russian aggression.

Although Borrell did say that Ukraine's victory over Russia “does not happen overnight”,  Russian media deliberately skipped a significant part of the European diplomat's speech that followed this phrase. Borrell emphasized that the greatest security guarantee that the EU can provide to Ukraine is its membership in the “European family”. However, for this to happen, the Union must remain united and prepare for a longer conflict than Russia had planned, which hoped to take over the country in two weeks and establish its own puppet regime, similar to the Belarusian one. Borrell emphasized that, despite the expectations of dictator Putin, Ukraine not only did not fall, but is also recapturing its territories. This became possible thanks to Ukraine's fierce resistance against the Kremlin regime and the support of its allies. Thus, according to the EU representative, Ukraine is the EU's top priority, and work to support the country must continue until it wins the war.

Propagandists spread such fake news because they want to convince Ukrainians that even their closest allies have allegedly turned their backs on them. Like, if the EU has already recognized Ukraine’s loss, the situation is definitely catastrophic. However, this is not the case, and Detector Media has repeatedly refuted such fakes and manipulations of Russian propaganda.

Orest Slyvenko, Artur Koldomasov, Vitalii Mykhailiv, Oleksandra Kotenko, Oleksandr Siedin, Kostiantyn Zadyraka, and Oleksiy Pivtorak are collaborating on this chronicle. Lesia Bidochko serves as the project coordinator, while Ksenia Ilyuk is the author of the project.