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Fake Ukrainian refugee set fire to DNA research center in California

Such information is disseminated on social networks, in particular, on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. Reports describe how a Ukrainian refugee allegedly set fire to a DNA research center in California. The reason for this crime, as telegram anonymous people say, was dissatisfaction with the genetic test conducted the day before. It turned out that the man is supposedly only 7.9% ethnic Ukrainian. Video evidence is added to the publications - a story from the international television company Al Jazeera. It is not true.

Analysts of the StopFake project analyzed the case and found that the news story was compiled, but there was no such news on the official pages on social networks or on the official website. At the same time, the compiled story is distributed only in the Russian segment of social networks.

According to Russian propagandists, the Ukrainian approached the well-known 23andMe laboratory in the United States. And fact-checkers are confident that if such an incident really occurred, the American media would cover such information. But no such mentions were found in the English-language segment of social networks or Google. Experts also recorded several signs of video compilation. Among these, the video fragments used in the video actually reflect other events. So the footage actually shows the arson of a prison lobby in the United States, which occurred in June 2023. And just this story was published on the official pages of one of the American media.

By spreading this fake news, the authors seek to demonize Ukrainian refugees and allegedly show how Ukrainians despise everyone and commit crimes outside their state. Thus, Russian propaganda is trying to present Ukrainian refugees as criminals or terrorists, as a cultural and economic threat to the EU - in order to reduce support for Ukraine. We mentioned this in our own research.

But at the same time, the Kremlin is promoting the thesis of “nationalist refugees” who are ready to commit any crime for “Ukrainian blood”. After all, the very reason for the probable crime was the fact that the Ukrainian refugee was dissatisfied with the DNA test and, moreover, questioned the results. This is not the first time Moscow has turned to this interpretation of Ukrainians—aggressive, ultra-nationalist and valuing only “Ukrainian blood”. That is, they once again called Ukrainians “Nazis”.

So, read the cases where Russian propaganda instrumentalized the following issues:

  • Women of Ukrainian fighters complain that their men are transfused with “Moscow blood”. 
  • Ukrainians prohibit foreign citizens from becoming blood donors.

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