Spilnota Detector Media

Fake In Lviv, school graduates were allegedly given ribbons with a map of Ukraine without Crimea

Pro-Russian resources are distributing a photo showing Ukrainian graduates at the last bell celebration ceremony, dressed in graduation ribbons. And, according to propagandists, this year the ribbons seemed to depict a map of Ukraine without the temporarily occupied Crimea.

However, this is a fake photo. The photo has been edited, because in the original photo the map of Ukraine on the ribbons is shown including Crimea. This was reported by specialists from the VoxCheck project. Using the PimEyes program, which performs a reverse face search, they found a photo of one of the girls in the feed - she was present at the Ukrainian Greco-Roman wrestling championship in Ternopil.

Then, thanks to a search using the words “last call celebration Ternopil”, it was possible to find original footage from the graduation. In fact, they were made not in Lviv, but in Ternopil - they were distributed by local media on May 31, 2024. In the photo of all graduates, the ribbons of all graduates depict Ukraine within the internationally recognized borders of 1991, including the temporarily occupied Crimea.

In addition, on the fake photo one can see signs of editing, probably with spot correction: on one ribbon in the place of Crimea there is a noticeable darkening, on the other there is a gap in the outline of the map.

Also, in all online stores where such graduation ribbons are sold or produced to order, Ukraine is depicted within the internationally recognized borders of 1991. In the end, this “news” is spread mainly by Russian websites and telegram channels. There is no mention in the Ukrainian media of the incident, which would certainly provoke outrage in the Ukrainian-language segment of social networks, because such situations are reacted sharply in the media space.

Fake Ukraine allegedly sold more land to foreign companies than it lost

European Parliament member Mick Wallace expressed disappointment that, in his opinion, Europeans in Ukraine bought more land than Russian troops captured in the east of the country. He accused the West of turning Ukraine into a colony, pointing to reform of land laws that allowed foreigners to purchase agricultural land. His statement was quickly picked up by the Russians. However, the facts show that the information is false.

Specialists from the StopFake project drew attention to this fake. They note that the Law on the Land Market in Ukraine was adopted by the Verkhovna Rada on March 31, 2020, but according to it, foreigners do not have the right to buy agricultural land. This is confirmed by Serhii Datsiv, senior lawyer at Integrites. He noted that the lifting of restrictions could become the subject of an all-Ukrainian referendum. It is now impossible to predict when this will happen due to the martial law in the country.

During the two years of operation of the land market from July 1, 2021 to July 1, 2023, Ukraine sold only 1% of agricultural land that was previously under a moratorium on sales. According to the Geodetic Service of Ukraine, as of May 2024, 307,966 land plots with a total area of 677,982 hectares were sold.

Propagandists spread such fakes to discredit Ukraine among Western partners and create distrust of the government’s actions among Ukrainians. They say that there is almost no country left because all its land was sold off.

Fake The Russian allegedly regrets obtaining Ukrainian citizenship as now he cannot leave the country and will fight

Propagandists are spreading a message in which the Russian allegedly expressed his negative opinion about obtaining Ukrainian citizenship. According to him, he was convinced of his mistake, since now, having a Ukrainian passport, he missed the opportunity to leave the country and he faces being sent to the front. However, this is fake.

Specialists from the StopFake project drew attention to it. They found out that this post first appeared on X (formerly Twitter) on April 19 and was posted by the user @KirriloUA, on whose account one can see mainly propaganda materials.

The photo used in this post does not actually belong to the author, but is taken from open sources and has been circulating since at least 2020. Moreover, in Ukraine, from November 1, 2016, only ID cards are issued, and not passports in booklet format, as in the photo. The latter forms have been taken out of circulation, and now a passport of the 1994 model can only be obtained through a judicial process.

The active dissemination of this material in pro-Russian media indicates that this may be part of an organized propaganda campaign to discredit Ukraine.

Fake The Russian military allegedly entered the village of Robotyne in the Zaporizhzhia region and established a foothold there

Information is being spread online that as a result of assault operations, Russian troops allegedly captured the village of Robotyne in the Zaporizhzhia region and actually gained a foothold there. In asserting this, propagandists refer to a statement by one of the deputies of the Zaporizhzhia regional council.

In fact, this “news” is not true. They write about this in the Center for Strategic Communications and Security at the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine.

The Defense Forces of southern Ukraine note that the information picked up by the media was published without checking its veracity by those who are not directly related to real combat work and do not have operational information about the situation in Robotyne.

The Southern Defense Forces also add that Ukrainian units are repelling Russian attacks with artillery on the approaches to Robotyne: the military of the 65th Mechanized Infantry Brigade and related units are destroying groups of invaders with strike drones and mortar crews.

Manipulation Zelenskyi allegedly said that Ukraine is ready to give up Crimea and Donbas

Russian propagandists are spreading information that Ukraine has expressed its readiness to “give up Crimea and Donbas” by initiating peace negotiations. They refer to statements made by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi during an interview with the American channel CBS. Propagandists claim that Country 404 proposes to begin a peaceful dialogue with Russia without demanding the return of the 1991 borders, although Kyiv previously insisted on this condition for resuming negotiations with Moscow. However, these statements are based on a distortion of reality.

Specialists from the StopFake project drew attention to this manipulation. They found that the actual content of the CBS News interview with Volodymyr Zelenskyi was reduced to incorrect conclusions to promote false narratives.

In fact, in an interview, Zelenskyi, answering a question about faith in the possibility of Ukraine returning all territories, including Crimea, emphasized that with sufficient support from partners, as well as a complete economic blockade of Russia, Ukraine will be able to restore its territorial integrity not only through military means. He expressed confidence that Russia’s defeat will lead to the loss of its support even by states that doubt Ukraine and will weaken positions within Russia itself, which will force it to dialogue. Zelenskyi called an important condition for such a dialogue the liberation of Ukrainian territories and the restoration of the territorial integrity of Ukraine within the annexation of Crimea by Russia.

Propagandists spread such manipulations to discredit the President and cause a split in Ukrainian society. Detector Media previously refuted other Russian lies about Zelenskyi.

Manipulation Zelenskyi allegedly promised Western countries to bomb Krasnodar

Russian resources are disseminating information that the President of Ukraine promised the West that the Ukrainian Armed Forces will use long-range weapons provided by partner countries only against targets in territories that Ukraine considers its own. However, according to a recent presidential decree, the list of “ours” now allegedly also includes one area (krai) and five regions of Russia, propagandists say.

In fact, this information is distorted, as reported by the Center for Strategic Communications and Information Security. Zelenskyi’s decree on the territories of Russia historically inhabited by Ukrainians concerns exclusively the protection of the national rights of Russian citizens of Ukrainian ethnic origin, but propagandists pass it off as a demonstration of “territorial claims”.

The weapons transferred by partners are used exclusively to defeat Russian targets in the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine. The Defense Forces are destroying objects on Russian territory by Ukrainian-made weapons.

By manipulating information, in this case, Russian propaganda seeks to mobilize Russians for war against Ukraine and the “collective West”, resorting to demonization. Propagandists also want to intimidate Ukraine’s Western partners with “escalation” from Russia in order to disrupt further assistance. Previously, we denied information that NATO countries would try to capture “six Russian regions”.

Manipulation There is supposedly no Ukraine on old German maps

Russian propagandists are distributing a video on anonymous telegram channels in which the author claims that old German maps published in 1881 and 1908 contain no mention of Ukraine or Ukrainians. However, this is a distortion of facts.

Specialists from the VoxCheck project drew attention to it. They found out that the term “Ukraine” designating the territory of the modern state of Ukraine had already appeared on the maps of European cartographers at the end of the 17th century.

Ukrainian historian Yaroslav Hrytsak explains that the word “Ukraine” as a geographical name was first mentioned in the Kyiv Chronicle of the 12th century as a designation of the territory of the Pereyaslav Principality. The term had different interpretations among Ukrainian historians: Mykhailo Hrushevskyi believed that “Ukraine” meant the Middle Dnipro region, and Agatangel Krymskyi argued that this was the territory where the Cossacks later arose. The term “Ukraine” began to acquire a specific geographical meaning throughout the 16th century, and its final consolidation in cartography occurred thanks to the maps of the French engineer Guillaume de Beauplan in the mid-17th century.

Therefore, if one carefully examines the map in the propaganda video, they will notice that the territory of modern Ukraine is designated as “Malorossia” or “Little Rus”, which was a derivative of the term “Hetmanate” or Left-Bank Ukraine. This approach of Russian propagandists is aimed at discrediting Ukraine, but it has no scientific basis, since the term “Ukraine” has been known since ancient times and was used to designate certain territories.

Accordingly, the thesis of propagandists that there are no mentions of Ukraine on old maps is unfounded.

Fake One bookmaker allegedly began accepting bets on the war in Ukraine

Pro-Russian telegram channels are disseminating information that the bookmaker Betfair has begun accepting bets on which city the Ukrainian Armed Forces will leave next. As confirmation of their own statements, Russian propagandists distribute an image with corresponding content. According to them, “Zaporizhzhia, Dnipro, Kherson, Kharkiv, Odesa and even Kyiv are at stake”.

In fact, this is another Russian fake. This was reported by the Center for Countering Disinformation under the National Security and Defense Council. There is no section with bets on the war in Ukraine on the official Betfair website. Accordingly, the image distributed by propagandists is fake.

The purpose of such fakes is to create the illusion of the Kremlin’s control over the situation in Ukraine and to assure that Russia’s victory is inevitable. However, the Ukrainian Armed Forces do not intend to give up their positions, and partner countries continue to provide military assistance to Ukraine, thereby making their contribution to the speedy de-occupation of the territories occupied by Russia.

• Read also: Betting on political assassinations in Ukraine has allegedly gained popularity in the United States

Hungary allegedly has territorial ambitions regarding Transcarpathia

Russia continues to promote the message that “Hungarians are encroaching on Transcarpathia”, despite a direct statement by Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjártó about supporting the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. The corresponding information leaks took place against the backdrop of Szijjarto’s arrival in Uzhhorod to meet with his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba, as well as the head of the Office of the President Andrii Yermak.

An important goal of such a meeting was to improve relations between the two countries by organizing a frank and constructive dialogue. Another goal of the conversation was to create the preconditions for a meeting between Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi.

At the same time, the result of negotiations in Uzhhorod between Szijjártó, Kuleba and Yermak was the beginning of an important dialogue on the rights of the Hungarian minority in Ukraine. Hungary and Ukraine agreed to create a joint commission, which, 10 days from the date of the meeting, should present a complete list of controversial issues regarding the rights of national minorities.

Also during the meeting, they discussed Ukraine’s membership in the EU, cooperation in logistics, development of transport links, energy and financial projects, etc. This was reported by the Center for Countering Disinformation.

Fake In Transcarpathia they allegedly mine the border with Hungary

Propagandists are distributing a video on social networks where a man in military uniform claims that mining of the borders with Hungary has begun in Transcarpathia. In the comments, social media users suggest that this is being done to stop border violations or because of the presence of Hungarian troops. However, this information is unreliable.

Specialists from the VoxCheck project drew attention to it. The State Border Service of Ukraine (SBS) has denied information about mining of the borders with Hungary. Project analysts were also unable to identify the serviceman depicted in the video, and Ukrainian media did not have relevant reports on this topic. Instead, the State National Security Service reported the continuation of mining of the borders with Belarus. According to the speaker of the State National Security Service Andrii Demchenko, the direction to Belarus is a priority for Ukraine from a security point of view.

Propagandists spread this misinformation to create panic among the population. They say that an attack is already underway on the western borders of Ukraine.

Message Zelenskyi is allegedly preparing to sell off Ukrainian territories

Russian propagandists are spreading the message proposed by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi. The bill on multiple citizenship is a preparation for the sale of Ukrainian territory. They say that the Ukrainian authorities will grant citizenship to Western businessmen so that they can buy Ukrainian land and enterprises and transport Ukrainian wealth to the EU or the USA.

This information is false. In fact, the Bill is intended to provide the opportunity to obtain Ukrainian passports, in particular, to representatives of the diaspora whose ancestors left Ukraine during various waves of emigration. Also, the proposed changes will allow a Ukrainian passport to foreigners who voluntarily defend Ukraine from Russian invasion. The bill does not provide for any preferences for the purchase of Ukrainian assets. This is stated by the Center for Countering Disinformation under the National Security and Defense Council.

Thus, the Russians are trying to sow panic among Ukrainian society and split it. It should be noted that citizens of the aggressor country will not have the opportunity to obtain a Ukrainian passport. Previously, we analyzed the message that Ukraine would allegedly ask for new military loans and sell its lands at the economic forum in Davos.

Manipulation Zelenskyi allegedly signed a decree that will return a number of historical lands to Ukraine

Pro-Kremlin resources are disseminating information that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi has issued a decree on the annexation of Russian territories to Ukraine. With this decree, he allegedly declared the right of sovereignty over the Krasnodar Territory, Voronezh, Kursk, Rostov, Briansk and Belgorod regions.

Thus, on January 22, 2024, Zelenskyi signed a decree “On the territories of the Russian Federation historically inhabited by Ukrainians”, but it does not talk about the “annexation” of these territories to Ukraine or the “declaration of sovereignty” over them. Propagandists resorted to yet another manipulation of facts, because the real purpose of the decree is to begin work to preserve the national identity of Ukrainians living in Russia. This is written about in the Center for Strategic Communications and Information Security.

This decree, in particular, is about restoring and preserving the historical memory of crimes against Ukrainians in the past and present; on countering disinformation and propaganda; development of cooperation between Ukrainians and other peoples conquered by Russia; preparation and distribution of materials, as well as updating and inclusion in educational programs of information about the true history of ethnic Ukrainians in Russia.

With this media manipulation, Russian propaganda seeks to fuel its narrative: “Ukraine is the aggressor”, so Russia had no other option but to attack Ukrainian lands. They say that in this way Russia wanted to protect its territorial integrity, as well as Russian-speaking Ukrainians who were allegedly “oppressed” in Ukraine. However, the truth is that this is only a justification for Russian aggression by Moscow, which has been encroaching on Ukrainian territories for centuries and seeking to seize them, today committing a real genocide of the Ukrainian people.

• Read also: Map from a bar in Baghdad proves that Ukraine was going to conquer Russia and Georgia (photo fake)

Fake Map from a bar in Baghdad proves that Ukraine was going to conquer Russia and Georgia (photo fake)

On January 8, a Georgian Facebook user posted a photo of a card that was described as being sent from one of the bars in the so-called Green Zone in Baghdad. There this card is used as a table cover. On the map, the contours and names of states have been changed, and the territory of Georgia has been merged with Ukraine. The user writes: “It turns out that our Ukrainian friends not only planned to conquer Russia, but also consider Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan part of their territory”.

Georgian fact-checkers from the Myth Detector project drew attention to this post.

In fact, the photo shared by a Facebook user shows a card from the board game Risk and has nothing to do with Ukraine's attitude toward other countries' territories or its plans for conquest. The borders of states on the map of the game are placed arbitrarily and cannot be perceived as a source of information about geography.

Since February 24, 2022, when the Detector Media team has been conducting the Disinformation Chronicles, this is the first time a board game map has been used as evidence of the propagandists’ worldview. Maps have long been used to justify territorial claims or intimidation over the seizure of territories. For example, Russians say that the Poles are planning to occupy Halychyna and Volyn, because when these territories were part of the Polish-Lithuanian Rzeczpospolita. They also say that all Ukraine’s neighbors have territorial claims against each other. Despite these reports, Russia is the only state on Ukraine's border that has invaded other states in the 21st century. The Russians invaded Georgia in 2008 and Ukraine in 2014.

Manipulation Almost half of Ukrainians in the front-line territories seem ready to agree to territorial concessions for the sake of peace

Such information is disseminated by pro-Kremlin media and anonymous telegrams. They say that 46% of Ukrainians living in the front-line regions are in favor of ending the war without returning the territories. In asserting this, propagandists refer to the all-Ukrainian public opinion poll Omnibus of the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS), which was conducted from November 29 to December 9, 2023. However, Russian propaganda manipulates its results.

In the “BezBrekhni” (No Lies) project, experts worked on this case. It turned out that the majority of respondents - 58% - are inclined to believe that even in the event of a significant reduction in assistance from Western countries, military operations should still be continued to put pressure on the occupiers. Moreover, this should be done even taking into account the risks for the territories controlled by Ukraine now.

Still, in the south and east of Ukraine, opinions were divided approximately in half, with a slight predominance of sentiment in favor of continuing hostilities. Yes, in the south 46%, and in the east 47% of Ukrainians believe that even with limited Western assistance, fighting should continue. At the same time, 40% and 42%, respectively, are ready to agree to a cessation of hostilities.

None of the options says that any part of society is willing to cede territory. In the survey, there is the following wording: “The fighting stops with serious security guarantees from the West, but the liberation of the territories is postponed for an indefinite future”. That is, we are not talking about the surrender of territories, as propaganda claims, but about the fact that their de-occupation will occur in the future.

KIIS also notes that “in this case, the factor of proximity to the front line plays an important role. The south and east are significantly closer to the active combat zone, which largely leads to a higher willingness to cease hostilities in the face of limited assistance (although, remember, the vast majority in these regions believe that with proper assistance Ukraine can succeed)”.

By manipulating the results of this survey, propagandists are trying to influence the morale of Ukrainians - to sow panic, fear and uncertainty in the future of the country. Moreover, in this case, Russian propaganda also encourages Ukrainian citizens to rethink the course of the war, saying that “the long-awaited victory may not happen”.  Detector Media has previously denied information that the majority of Ukrainians allegedly want to capitulate.

Disclosure Ukraine is allegedly preparing to surrender the central and western regions of the country to Poland

Pro-Russian resources are disseminating information that the Ukrainian authorities seem to have begun to prepare for the surrender of the central and western regions of Ukraine to Poland. This is evidenced by the fact that children began to be taught Polish in schools in the Poltava region. However, this is a fake.

This case was studied by specialists at the Center for Countering Disinformation. They managed to find out that the Polish language in the Poltava region is taught in only two schools, and not in all, as propagandists claim. This was reported by the Poltava City Council. Moreover, at the beginning of the school year, in addition to compulsory English, children in the region were offered to study Polish or German as a second foreign language, which indicates free choice and not coercion.

By claiming that Ukraine is ready to surrender its territories to Poland, Russian propaganda  is trying to demoralize Ukrainian society and assure everyone around that the defeat of the Ukrainian side in the war against Russia is inevitable. Propagandists also aim to create an image of Poland as an enemy among Ukrainians by spreading disinformation, as in this case. As part of the narrative that Poland will supposedly “absorb” Ukraine, we wrote about a conspiracy theory called “Ukrpolin”.

Disclosure To win the war, almost 29 million Ukrainians must die

Social networks began to spread messages in Ukrainian with the information that “our army liberated 270-300 km², losing 71 thousand soldiers killed”. The publications also say: in order to de-occupy all territories, it will be necessary to “kill” almost 29 million Ukrainians.

Specialists from the Center for Strategic Communications and Information Security analyzed such messages. They found out that such publications are Russian IPSO. As for the deoccupied territories, this is the case – as of September 10, 2023, the Armed Forces of Ukraine actually liberated about 270 km². However, the data on the number of Ukrainian military deaths during hostilities is invented, since this information is a state secret and will be made public by Ukraine only after the end of the war. It turns out that the “calculation” of future losses was made on the basis of imaginary data, so it cannot be considered reliable.

Propagandists manipulate information and create facts because they see this as effective and potentially influential on Ukrainian society. Such disinformation is spread with the aim of demoralizing Ukrainians and making them think about giving up. When reading similar cases that can evoke strong emotions, we encourage you to think critically. We also worked on the Russian information campaign, when on behalf of the Ministry of Agrarian Policy, recipes for dishes from pigeons and dogs were sent to Ukrainians in connection with the alleged crisis in the agricultural sector in Ukraine.

Fake Ukraine allegedly began mining territories on the border with Hungary

Propaganda resources began distributing a video in which an unknown man in the uniform of the Ukrainian Armed Forces “warns” residents of the Transcarpathian region that he and other military personnel were allegedly given an order to start mining the border areas bordering Hungary. It's fake.

The information was analyzed by the experts from the Center for Countering Disinformation. They asked the State Border Service of Ukraine to comment on the video. They replied that the information mentioned in the recording was not true. Probably, having taken possession of the uniform of the Ukrainian Armed Forces as a result of one of the battles at the front, the Russians decided to take advantage of this and create a fake video.

Thus, Russian propaganda is trying to sow panic among the civilian population of Transcarpathia and resort to one of the propaganda tactics: using fear, uncertainty and doubt to achieve this goal. Previously, we denied information that the wife of the Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs crossed the Ukrainian-Hungarian border with $13 million.

Manipulation Ukraine may join NATO “in exchange for territory”

Pro-Kremlin resources are disseminating information that Ukraine was offered to join the North Atlantic Alliance “in exchange for abandoning” Crimea, Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson regions. Propagandists refer to the words of former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who allegedly made such a proposal due to the “failure of the Ukrainian Armed Forces counteroffensive”. However, this is manipulation.

This case was analyzed by the fact-checkers of the StopFake project. They found out that Rasmussen actually promoted the idea of Ukraine joining NATO without occupied territories. However, he did not call on Ukraine to give up those territories, but had something slightly different in mind. In his opinion, the country’s early entry into NATO will help protect itself from new manifestations of Russian aggression in the territories controlled by Ukraine, since Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty on Collective Defense will apply to them. That is, the invasion of Russian troops into these zones will mean an attack on NATO and the response will be immediate. If Ukraine joins NATO as soon as possible, it will also be possible to release additional Ukrainian defense forces, which, for example, are now located on the border with Belarus, and send them to de-occupy the territories captured by the Russians.

Anders Fogh Rasmussen also reminded that there is a similar historical precedent. In 1955, West Germany joined NATO and Article 5 was extended to its territory. At the same time, it did not apply to East Germany, which was then under Soviet occupation.

Russian propaganda is trying to demoralize Ukrainian society with such manipulations and declare that Ukraine allegedly cannot de-occupy the territories captured by Russian troops. Previously, we denied information that NATO is preparing for the defeat of Ukraine and the occupation of the western part of Ukrainian territories.

Manipulation In the Gaza Strip, Romanians ask for help, but Bucharest “first of all saves Ukrainians”

On the Internet, propagandists began to spread information that Romania is in no hurry to help evacuate its “stranded” citizens in the Gaza Strip as a result of the Hamas attack on Israel. Bucharest is supposedly engaged in saving Ukrainians, that is, it puts them as a priority. This is manipulation.

The fact-checkers of the StopFake project looked into this case and found out that there is no information that Romania is prioritizing the evacuation of Ukrainian citizens. Evacuation from the Gaza Strip is not yet possible, so propagandists manipulate information when they write that the Romanian authorities are saving Ukrainians, but not Romanians. On October 8, 2023, Romania made its first flight, evacuating 346 Romanian citizens from Ben Gurion Airport (Tel Aviv, Israel), as reported by the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Almost a week later, the first evacuation plane to Romania with Ukrainians on board took off from the same Israel on October 14 - there were 207 Ukrainian citizens on board, mostly women, children and the elderly. Due to the fact that Ukrainian airspace is closed to aircraft due to Russia’s armed aggression, Ukrainian citizens are forced to fly first to Romania, a neighboring country, and only then travel overland to Ukraine.

Russia is trying to “create a quarrel” between Ukraine and its neighboring states, one of which is Romania, in order to reduce their support for the Ukrainian people from Russian aggression. Previously, pro-Kremlin media also spread disinformation about the rescue of Ukrainians from Israel in order to once again discredit the Ukrainian government for its inaction.

Manipulation The US Secretary of State incorrectly calculated the number of deoccupied territories of Ukraine

Propagandists spreading pro-Russian rhetoric on anonymous telegram channels claim that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s statement that Ukraine has liberated more than 50% of the territories seized by the Russian Federation is allegedly erroneous. Like, this information was taken “from a parallel reality”. This is manipulation.

The specialists from the VoxCheck project drew attention to it. They found the original video of Blinken speaking. In it, he states that Ukraine has returned more than 50% of the territories Russia has seized since the start of the full-scale invasion. However, he did not mean part of the territory that Russia captured back in 2014. Project analysts cite statements from foreign military experts who claim that Ukraine has returned 50–54% of the territories captured by Russia since February 24, 2022.

By spreading this manipulation, propagandists want to undermine trust in Western officials and discredit the successes of the Ukrainian army. All this is being done to show that the Ukrainian counteroffensive is allegedly not successful. Detector Media has previously refuted other fakes and manipulations of propagandists on this topic.

Message European integration of Ukraine is in reality absorption and colonization

This thesis was circulated on social networks, in particular on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. Reports say that Europe is trying to gradually absorb Ukraine in order to turn it into its colony. Like, Ukraine is a “puppet state”, so Europe wants to become its guardian.

EU vs Disinfo project fact-checkers took up this case and explained that Ukraine is not controlled by the US, the EU or any other foreign organization or government. The sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine is respected by most countries of the world, but Russia has been violating them since 2014. Western and other countries provide Ukraine with military assistance and financial assistance for the country's effective self-defense against an unprovoked Russian invasion. Aid is provided to protect Ukraine, not to absorb it.

Such rhetoric is used by propagandists to fuel the narrative about Ukraine as a “puppet state” that is not capable of making decisions for itself. Allegedly, Ukraine is led from outside. The authors call Ukraine's European integration path “colonial” in order to demonize the West and the EU as an institution that allegedly captures states, and does not contribute to their development.

Fake Ukrainian authorities will forcibly seize land from people for “Polish mercenaries”

Such information was disseminated in social networks, in particular, on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. Reports say that Ukraine is allegedly planning to pass a law (the draft law No. 8225) allowing the authorities to alienate real estate - houses and land plots. Allegedly, Ukraine will transfer the houses to the property of “Polish mercenaries” who fought in the Armed Forces of Ukraine. It is not true.

The fact-checkers of the StopFake project drew attention to the case, and found that the draft law No. 8225 nowhere states that land or real estate will be given away to “Polish mercenaries” free of charge. The draft law refers exclusively to the use of seized real estate for the construction, restoration or reconstruction of critical infrastructure facilities of categories I and II.

This draft law is an addition to the law “On the alienation of land plots, other real estate objects located on them, in private ownership, for public needs or for reasons of public need”. That is, it regulates the alienation of land plots for the construction or reconstruction of critical infrastructure facilities. Thus, according to the authors of the draft, they facilitate the transfer of a land plot of communal or private property to the state for the restoration of infrastructure.

Manipulation The commander of Azov said that the Armed Forces of Ukraine are preparing to capture small Russian cities

This thesis was circulated on social networks, in particular on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. The reports say that the Armed Forces of Ukraine are preparing to capture small Russian cities. This was allegedly reported by Bohdan Krotevych, the acting commander of the Azov brigade. The authors refer to Bohdan Krotevych's interview with the Washington Post. This is manipulation.

The fact-checkers of the VoxCheck project drew attention to the case, which determined that Bohdan Krotevych suggested that Ukraine could capture Russian cities, but did not declare the readiness of the Ukrainian command to take such steps. In the interview itself, Bohdan Krotevych talked about the First Chechen-Russian War and their strategy to capture small Russian towns in order to use them as leverage for Russia to return the occupied territories. He laid out his thoughts and suggested that Ukraine might do the same. However, he did not state this as a fait accompli.

Neither the Washington Post journalists nor Bohdan Krotevych claimed that this was the position of the military or political leadership of Ukraine. The counteroffensive plans are known to a limited circle of people.

Fake Poland will support its pensioners “using the Ukrainians”

Such information was disseminated in social networks, in particular, on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. Reports say that due to the decrease in the number of able-bodied citizens in Poland, officials will compensate for this with new citizens in the “newly annexed western territories of Ukraine”. Allegedly, Poland is already planning to cut off some part of Ukraine. The authors of the messages refer to the materials of Polish journalists. It’s a lie.

Analysts of the VoxCheck project investigated this case and found that the material cited by the propagandists refers to a decrease in the number of able-bodied people and future problems in the pension system. However, the text does not mention that these problems will be solved with the help of Ukrainians from the annexed territories of Ukraine. That is, the authors of the fake message simply came up with information that was beneficial to them.

By spreading this fake, propagandists once again seek to convince that Poland wants to cut off the territory of Ukraine. Like, this is a partner with bad intentions, from whom one should expect “everything”.

Let us remind you that earlier analysts of Detector Media denied the fake, allegedly Zelenskyi promised Poland the western territories of Ukraine in exchange for “assistance during the counteroffensive”.

Fake Polish TV channel reported on the real plans of Poland to divide Ukraine

Such messages appeared on social networks at the end of March. The reports said that a recent report by one of the Polish TV channels allegedly showed a map according to which Ukraine should be divided between Russia, Poland, Romania and Hungary. The publications claimed that the video was relevant and the map shows that “the entire south and east of Ukraine will belong to Russia”, and the western part will “join” Poland, small parts will go to Romania and Hungary. However, this is fake. The Polish channel did not show such a map in 2023.

As the analysts of the Correctiv project found out, the video is not up-to-date, it shows a report from Polish television in 2014, in which a Russian politician offered Poland to divide Ukraine. The Polish government called the proposal “strange” and one that should not be taken seriously.

Analysts have researched that the logos of the Polish news channel TVP1 can be seen in an online video that is being circulated in the messages, but what is heard is not what the messages claim: the speaker first speaks in Polish about “joining our territory”, and then says: “ […] Hungary and Romania received a similar proposal. There is no information about which regions Russia still wants to consider as its own, but only the central region will remain within the boundaries of modern Ukraine”.

Using the image from the video and the name of the broadcaster, analysts did a reverse image search and came across an original Polish TV report. It is dated March 23, 2014, so it is not relevant, contrary to what they say in social networks.

Russian propaganda regularly spreads messages about the plans of Poland and other countries to annex part of Ukraine. In fact, such statements are always unsubstantiated, but Russia needs it to partially justify itself by illustrating the desire of other states to seize part of Ukraine.