Fake Austrian shopping malls oppose involvement in war in Ukraine

Propagandists distribute a video allegedly filmed in one of the shopping centers in Vienna. It shows a TV screen, which shows the inscription “Nicht unser Krieg” (Not our war) against the background of the Austrian flag. Like, the Austrians do not want to support Ukraine. It's fake.

Analysts of the VoxCheck project drew attention to it. They found out that the photo with the inscription contained traces of inept editing. In particular, the pixels on the “screen” are uneven and moved out, which is impossible in a real screen. Moreover, on other screens shown in the video, you can see an advertisement for a waste reduction project in the Turmstraße residential center of the Mitte district in the city of Berlin. In addition, one of the Twitter users found out that the shopping center where the photo was taken is not in Vienna, but in Berlin.

Thus, Russian propagandists want to convince Ukrainians that Europeans are war-weary. Like, the Austrians do not want to help Ukraine. However, the Ukrainian diaspora in Vienna is actively implementing a number of projects that are of high interest among ordinary Austrians.

Fake Cars donated by Latvia as humanitarian aid are being sold in Ukraine

Propagandists are spreading information that Latvian cars which were donated as humanitarian aid are being resold in Ukraine. Like, cars confiscated from Latvian drunk drivers can already be found in the car markets of Lutsk and Rivne. The authors of these posts even add a “screenshot” from the video, supposedly proof of the veracity of this information. It's fake.

Analysts of the VoxCheck project drew attention to it. They found a video from the “screenshot” in the TikTok and found out that there was no inscription “Confiscated from Latvia” on it. In addition, the authors of the video do not say that the cars in the video were brought from Latvia and do not indicate the date the video was shot. The account on which it appeared is dedicated to auto-selection and car reviews.

VoxCheck analysts remind that on February 16, 2023, the Latvian Saeima decided to confiscate cars from drunk drivers. The seized cars are handed over as humanitarian aid to the Ukrainian military. As part of this initiative, eight cars have already been handed over, and on March 14, the Cabinet of Ministers of Latvia decided to hand over another eighteen state-owned cars.

Thus, Russian propagandists want to accuse Ukrainians of neglecting the help and sympathy of foreigners. Like, ungrateful Ukrainians are begging for everything out of Europeans in order to resell it later. For the same purpose, propagandists wrote about how Ukraine allegedly plundered European humanitarian aid worth 342 million euros.

Fake In one of the shopping centers in Austria, the advertisement depicted the inscription “It’s not our war”

Such a message was circulated on social networks, in particular on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. A shopping mall in Austria is reportedly displaying an ad with the inscription “It’s not our war” in German. The authors of the messages attach a video to the publication, where such advertising can be seen from the TV screen. It is not true.

The fact-checkers of the VoxCheck project drew attention to the case, and determined that such advertising was fake. At the same time, analysts explain that the photo shows signs of editing. As the checkers explained, in the photo one can see the untypical placement of pixels on the TV screen. They should be placed evenly. In this case, they are placed unevenly and “moved out” on top of each other. Therefore, it lets fact-checkers verify that the photo has been edited with a photo editor.

Fake A Brazilian volunteer was beaten in the Ukrainian army as he tried to escape from the position

Such a message was circulated on social networks, in particular on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. The reports say that the military of the 128th brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine beat a man with his hands tied with a stick on his back. Like, it was a Brazilian volunteer who tried to escape from the position. A bound man in military uniform asked in Portuguese “not to beat him”. As proof, the authors add a video showing the process of beating an allegedly Brazilian volunteer with the participation of the Ukrainian military. At the same time, the authors of the messages note that the video was found on the phone of one of the prisoners of war of the Ukrainian military. It is not true.

The fact-checkers of the StopFake project drew attention to the case, and they investigated that the video was not real. As analysts explain, this is another production of Russian propaganda because the Brazilians are indeed among the volunteers but do not serve in the 128th brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Like other volunteers from other countries, the Brazilians serve only in the Foreign Legion of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

In addition, StopFake analysts checked the video using language detection tools. That's how they figured out that the bound man in the video was speaking Portuguese. In Brazil, the official language is Portuguese. However, later the fact-checkers turned to Brazilian colleagues to clarify whether it was possible to determine from the pronunciation of the man in the video that he was Brazilian. They were told that the man was definitely not a native speaker and that he was studying European Portuguese, not Brazilian Portuguese. Actually, European Portuguese is spoken, in particular, in Portugal, and not in Brazil. These two varieties of Portuguese, for example, have a significant difference in phonetics that can be easily heard and recorded.

Fake The military of the Armed Forces of Ukraine burned the Koran

Such a message was circulated on social networks, in particular on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. Reports say that the Ukrainian military mocks the Islamic religion: they cut bacon on the Koran, and then kindle a fire over it. The authors of the messages add a video to the publication where this can be seen. It is not true.

The Center for Strategic Communications investigated this case and determined that the video was staged. As experts explain, it contains errors in pronunciation and an “unhidden Russian accent”. Experts quoted the phrase of one of the heroes of the video, which sounds like this: “Guys, you can’t set the fire”. The Center for Strategic Communications is sure that the Russian military independently filmed a video, tearing up the Koran and passing it off as the actions of the Ukrainian military.

Fake In German restaurant, they launched an advertising campaign featuring Zelenskyi as a piggy bank

Such information was disseminated in social networks, in particular, on telegram channels broadcasting pro-Kremlin rhetoric. Reports say a German restaurant has launched an advertising campaign depicting Volodymyr Zelenskyi as a “piggy bank”. As evidence, the propagandists add a video supposedly advertising on the YouTube video hosting. In the video, you can also see the inscription: “We are tired of feeding this pig - it's time to cook Eisbein! [edit] meat dish of German cuisine]”. It is not true.

The fact-checkers of the StopFake project investigated the case, and they asked the restaurant owner for a comment. A spokesperson for the restaurant assured that they did not run similar advertising campaigns on YouTube. Analysts explain that the video was published in the telegram channels of the Russian segment and there is no evidence that the advertisement was replicated on video hosting. They are sure that the video was edited using a special program.

In addition, the fact checker adds that such “advertising” most likely could not be moderated in Google Ads, since it is contrary to the company's advertising policy. The Google Ads website states that they check all ad elements for violations. If found, the status of the ad will change to “Rejected” and it will not be displayed. For example, they do not allow advertising of content that incites hatred, promotes discrimination or humiliates, insults, harasses an individual or group of individuals as in the case of “advertising” with the participation of Zelenskyi.

Fake In Ukraine, NATO helicopter was shot down

A video allegedly shooting down a helicopter that NATO provided to Ukraine is being circulated on social networks. Like, as soon as these helicopters cross the border of Ukraine, they deal with Russian missiles. Allegedly, the Russians shot down more than one such helicopter. Like, only China shows these videos, and the rest of the countries hide the information. It's fake.

The video of the helicopter shooting down is footage from the video game Arma 3. Reuters fact-checkers found the origin of this video. This footage is likely taken from a YouTube video uploaded in April 2022. It was labeled as a representation of the video game's origins, and was subsequently uploaded in lower resolution without such information. It is difficult to see the animation from the video of the worst quality, so the video may be perceived as real.

Russian propaganda has previously distributed video game cards to illustrate military events. In particular, in this way they were convincing people that Russia “had destroyed” the Ukrainian tank division. Video game footage was also passed off as an online broadcast of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Fake Zelenskyi called on the US to send Americans to fight for Ukraine

There are messages disseminated to both Ukrainian and foreign audiences that allegedly Volodymyr Zelenskyi believes that the United States is not helping Ukraine enough. Allegedly, America like Ukraine should send its daughters and sons to war. Allegedly, if NATO “does not want to give enough weapons”, they should take part in the war. They say Zelenskyi made such a statement during a press conference on the anniversary of the great war. It is not true.

The video circulating online is edited and taken out of context. Volodymyr Zelenskyi does not call on the US or NATO to enter the war. StopFake fact-checkers explain that the video shows a fragment of the President's answer to a question from a BBC journalist about what Volodymyr Zelenskyi would like to say to those Americans who do not support military assistance to Ukraine. The response stated that if Ukraine did not win the war, Russia would start a war with NATO countries, primarily with the Baltic countries. In this case, all NATO countries, including the United States, will have to send their military to war. From this answer, the propagandists compiled the text they needed. The fact-checkers of the MythDetector project came to the same conclusion.

Since the beginning of the war, Russian propaganda has been promoting the narrative that Ukraine is trying to draw other countries into a war with Russia.

Manipulation Ukraine occupied Lithuania and other Baltic countries

Photos and videos from the Seimas of Lithuania are being circulated on social networks. They depict choristers in embroidered shirts performing the anthem of Ukraine, printed on sheets with the Ukrainian flag and coat of arms on the back. Reports say that this is evidence that Ukraine has already occupied not only Lithuania, but also other Baltic countries. This is manipulation.

In the Seimas, the anthem of Ukraine was indeed performed as a sign of solidarity with Ukraine on February 24, 2023. Fact-checkers of the Delfi project confirmed the time and place of the shooting using software. Events dedicated to the expression of solidarity with Ukraine, during which Ukrainian symbols were used, were held in many countries of the world. Therefore, this can in no way be regarded as evidence of the occupation of the Baltic countries by Ukraine. Fact-checkers note that this is not the first case of misrepresentation of information about the use of Ukrainian symbols or elements of Ukrainian culture.

Russian propaganda deliberately spreads the message about the “Ukrainization” of states that help Ukraine in order to turn their citizens against Ukrainians. Allegedly, helping Ukraine threatens to destroy their culture and identity. Earlier propagandists wrote that the Ukrainians were trying to Ukrainize Poland.

Fake Ukrainians protest against Zelenskyi

In the foreign segment of social networks, videos of alleged protests in Ukraine are being distributed. Like, Ukrainians are protesting against Zelenskyi, in whom they were disappointed during the year of the war. According to correspondents, the rallies took place day and night. This video is fake.

The protests in the video have nothing to do with Ukraine or Zelenskyi. This is a video of protests in Slovakia in 2018 and 2019 as a result of the murder of a journalist. The fact checker of the Dpa-factchecking project drew attention to the spread of the fake. They found out that on February 21, 2018, the Slovak investigative journalist Jan Kuciak and his fiancee Martina Kushnirova were killed. This murder led to mass protests in Slovakia, specifically on March 9, 2018, March 16, 2018 and February 21, 2019. These protests led to the resignations of the chief of police and the ministers of justice, internal affairs and culture.

We recall that in Ukraine, during martial law, restrictions were imposed on holding mass events and a curfew was introduced. Russian propaganda is trying in any way to destabilize the situation inside Ukraine and discredit Ukraine and Ukrainians at the international level.

Fake In the news of the American TV channel they ridiculed Zelenskyi

A video allegedly from the news program of an American TV channel is being distributed on social networks. On it, the hosts talk about “a puppy from Ohio who got the attention of the whole country”. Against the background of their conversation, there is a story about the trip of Volodymyr Zelenskyi to the UK. In the comments, social media users write that Zelenskyi is openly ridiculed already on American television. This video is fake.

A video montage of a news story with a video recording of Volodymyr Zelenskyi is being distributed on social networks. According to the fact-checkers of MythDetector, in this video, the hosts of the KCCI TV channel talk about a puppy that signaled to its owner from the car. It went viral on social media in February 2017. The propagandists intentionally edited it with a video recording of the President of Ukraine.

Thus, Russian propaganda uses the tactics of ridicule to discredit the President of Ukraine. Previously, propagandists spread messages about fake graffiti with Zelenskyi in public places, fake magazine covers, etc.

Fake In Berlin, they urge not to provide tanks to Ukraine because of advertising

A video allegedly recorded in Berlin is being circulated on social networks. On the advertising screen on the wall of the building, a video is broadcast with a call not to provide tanks to Ukraine. The ads used images of 1943 and 2022 and the slogan “Maybe, never again?”. Social media users add that this is allegedly how the Germans are trying to remind their government about the events of the world war. It's fake.

The video was created with software. The author and date of the video is unknown. The fact-checkers of the Correctiv project have established that the screen is indeed located in Berlin. Its owners denied broadcasting such a video not only on a specific screen, but also on any other of their property.

Thus, Russian propaganda continues to oppose the supply of German tanks to Ukraine. Previously, fakes were spread about similar advertising at Stuttgart Airport. Russian propaganda also spread messages that Western tanks would not help Ukraine, the Russians would burn them down.

Disclosure On Telegram, fake channels of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine to have been created

Reports are circulating on the net that the Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine allegedly decided to create telegram channels with “official information” about the activity of enemy aircraft and the movement of drones.

The Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine denied this information: “The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine does not have any telegram channels that reflect the air situation, the movement of enemy air targets, the work of air defense, etc”. The department also urged administrators running fake pages on social networks not to use official Air Force symbols or photos of officials to promote their information platforms.

Official information platforms of the Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine are:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kpszsu

Telegram: https://t.me/kpszsu

Instagram: instagram.com/air.force.ua.official

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KpsZSU

YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCfg-2zTad5ZVU1fQEtT6DSA

Fake In Paris, they protest against the supply of weapons to Ukraine

This information is spread by Russian propaganda media. It also appeared on anonymous telegram channels broadcasting pro-Russian rhetoric. Reports say mass rallies were held in Paris against arms supplies to Ukraine. Like, the protesters called for the dismissal of the incumbent President Macron, and also demanded that the authorities would withdraw from NATO. However, this is all fake. 

The fact checkers of the StopFake project drew attention to the case. According to fact-checkers, to confirm their words, the propagandists published a video of the rally, in which you can see the logo of the Russian state news agency RT, the broadcast of which has been banned in the European Union since March 2022. In the RT story, you can see the comment of Florian Filippo, the leader of the far-right Party of patriots, who criticizes France's policy towards Ukraine. This politician also often organizes anti-vaccination protests, pro-Kremlin and anti-Ukrainian rallies. However, the video of the protest published by the propaganda has nothing to do with Ukraine. In the RT story, it is clear that the protesters in the video are carrying banners with inscriptions about the retirement age, and not about military assistance to Ukraine. However, propagandists use such fakes on purpose in order to create the appearance that the level of support for Ukraine in European countries is gradually falling. They say that in many countries, in particular France, people are against the supply of weapons.

Disclosure Near Bakhmut, Russians are filming a staged video of the battles

This was reported in the Center for national resistance. On January 22, Russian propagandist Piehov shared a video allegedly filmed in the battles for Bilohorivka. The propagandist claims that he is “directly in Bilohorivka”. Like, the Russians are trying to break through the defense line “Siversk - Soledar - Bakhmut - Chasiv Yar”. In fact, the video was filmed in the temporarily occupied territory, on the outskirts of the village of Shypylivka, which is located almost eight kilometers from Bilohorivka, which is under the control of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Moreover, the video shows how the Russians are fleeing from Ukrainian shelling.

On January 24, another Russian propagandist, Dambiyev, shared a video on his telegram channel, which allegedly recorded battles in the village of Krasna Hora near Bakhmut. However, this video is staged, it was filmed in Mariupol. This is evidenced by the results of the OSINT check of this video.

The situation in these sectors of the front is really difficult now, there are fights there. Probably, Russian propaganda, due to the spread of fake videos, is trying to demoralize Ukrainians and take credit for the next “achievements”.

Russian propaganda systematically uses fake videos to promote their interests. Previously, they distributed videos of how the Russian military shot sunflowers and boasted that it was a unit of the Armed Forces of Ukraine; how the Russians allegedly detained “Ukrainian saboteurs” on Russian territory; how they “destroyed” the Ukrainian tank division, etc.

Fake In Ukraine, it will be forbidden to call a hare “rusak”

Russian media are spreading information that Ukraine plans to ban calling a hare “rusak”  (gray hare). Like, this name is associated with the Russians and Russia. As evidence, the propagandists cite an alleged video recording of a live broadcast on the Ukrainian TV channel 1+1. On it, during a story about the defense of the Donetsk airport in 2014-2015, the news feed allegedly noted: “The gray hare” will be forbidden to be called a “rusak-hare” - the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. It's fake.

StopFake's fact-checkers discovered that an excerpt circulating online had been edited. The official account of the TSN program on Facebook has a full version of the broadcast of the news marathon for January 16 with a report by journalists from the Rada TV channel about the battles for the Donetsk airport, which was used by propagandists. The original video in the news feed contained information that the White House believes that Russia's attempts to demoralize the Ukrainians failed again, citing CNN.

In this way, Russian propagandists are trying to nourish the narrative that Ukrainians are Nazis and russophobes who hate everything related to Russians.

Fake A bus with the “Zelensky is a black hole” inscription was seen on a video from an interview with a German official

Russian propaganda media are spreading an excerpt from a video from an interview with a German Bundestag deputy, where a bus with the inscription “Zelensky is a black hole” is allegedly visible. According to the Kremlin media, such transport appeared on the streets of Berlin.

Also, messages on the network say that the driver has already been fined for the inscription on his transport. However, this whole situation is a fiction of Russian propaganda.

According to Vox Ukraine analysts, the video shows an interview with German MP Nina Scheer for Die Welt, which she shared on her Facebook page. The clothing and location are identical to those in the bus video. In the recording from the interview, at about the third minute, the bus already known to us appears, but it is clearly visible that the inscription there is completely different: Busmobil 24.

Also in the German media there is no mention of the existence of a bus with the inscription “Zelensky is a black hole”, as well as no reports of a driver's fine.

With such fakes, Russia is trying to discredit the Ukrainian authorities. With the beginning of a full-scale invasion, this happens all the time. Recently, the enemy media spread information that the Minister of Defense allegedly rejoiced that the Ukrainians had become a “shield” for NATO. The Russian propaganda does not ignore Volodymyr Zelenskyi either, reporting on cartoons on the covers of foreign magazines or that he and other officials increased their fortune in 2022.

Disclosure A deepfake with Yurii Lutsenko is being circulated online

In the Ukrainian segment of social networks, a video with allegedly featuring Yurii Lutsenko is being shared after a hard battle in Soledar, Donetsk region. In particular, the Volyn politician Volodymyr Bondar published a screenshot from the video on his personal page. However, according to the fact-checkers of the “Brekhunets” (Lier) project, this video is a deepfake.

According to the fact-checkers, with the help of special programs, the authors created a so-called deepfake, because the video footage shows a man in military uniform, who really looks like Ukrainian politician Yurii Lutsenko. In the video, the hero's face moves a lot, it increases or decreases in size, which is not typical of a live, non-supporting video. Analysts are convinced that the authors of the video took a photograph of a military man and, using computer technology, superimposed Lutsenko's face on it.

Moreover, the video was recorded for several seconds and contains only musical accompaniment, although the military himself is silent in the video and does not add a single comment.

Fake Pregnant Ukrainian women launched a “patriotic” flash mob

Russian media and pro-Russian telegram channels spread information about the flash mob “Meet me on the battlefield”, which was allegedly launched by pregnant Ukrainian women. Photos and videos are circulating on the net, in which women write “meet me on the battlefield” on their stomachs. Like, this is how Ukrainian women demonstrate that they are ready to educate future military men. According to another version, supposedly this is how unborn children talk to warring parents. It's fake.

Russian propaganda came up with this flash mob. According to StopFake, a photo of an  allegedly pregnant woman who left for Italy due to a full-scale invasion is in the public domain. It first appeared on the Russian social network back in 2021. There are no inscriptions on the woman's stomach, they were made later to create a fake photo.

The video, allegedly from the Italian publication Il resto del Carlino, also uses editing. This footage is taken from the documentary “Mother Ukraine / Pregnant during the war”. The film tells the story of a girl who is going through pregnancy, and her husband is a soldier of APU.

Thus, Russian propagandists are trying to show the international community that Ukrainians are an aggressive nation. Previously, propagandists manipulated the topic of mobilizing women and children, and also said that pregnant Ukrainian women are given draft notices.

Fake In Volyn, a church was set on fire, the rector of which refused to go to the Orthodox church of Ukraine (OCU)

Russian media and pro-Russian telegrams are spreading videos of church fires. Allegedly, a fire occurred in the Holy Ascension church in the village of Ovadne, Volodymyr district, Volyn region. They say that the church was set on fire, because in Ukraine there is a “struggle against Orthodoxy”, and the priest “refused to leave the Moscow Patriarchate”. It is not true.

Information about the fire was denied by both rescuers and local authorities. The fire was not registered in the regional department of the State emergency service. According to the head of the Ovadne community, Serhii Panasevych, the video does not show their church.

Fact-checkers of the “Brekhunets” (Lier) project found out that this is a video of a fire in the church of St. Theodosius of Chernihiv in the village of Novooleksandrivka in the Dnipropetrovsk region, which occurred on January 19, 2021.

Russian propaganda systematically spreads messages about “harassment” and “discrimination” against the Moscow Patriarchate Church in Ukraine. Previously, reports of an attack on a priest in a temple were used to nourish this message. They also wrote that the transfer of churches from the Church of the Moscow Patriarchate to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine is “a struggle for influence on the minds of people”; allegedly Ukraine is “destroying” the greatest religious denomination; and that allegedly Ukraine needs to be “desatanized” and “deshaitanized”.

Fake Ukrainian refugees robbed the apartment of an elderly woman in Poland

A video is circulating online in which an elderly woman allegedly complains to the Polish authorities that she was “robbed” by Ukrainian refugees, whom she settled in her apartment. In different versions of the story, either the woman’s children or the city authorities persuaded the 73-year-old Polish woman to give shelter to a Ukrainian family. It seems that the Ukrainians robbed a woman, smashed the apartment, ran into debt for housing and disappeared. The victim allegedly vainly demands compensation from the authorities. It is not true.

The video has nothing to do with Ukraine. StopFake fact-checkers found out that this video first appeared online on April 24, 2018. An elderly woman in the video complains that she was not provided with the promised services - the replacement of all equipment with the Internet and television. The video was probably filmed at the customer service office of the company "Vectra", which provides telecommunications services in Poland.