Political Satire Returns to Russian TV, Neutered As Ever

Political Satire Returns to Russian TV, Neutered As Ever

Chechen dictator Ramzan Kadyrov, whose regime is widely accused of human rights crimes, is a comedy star on Russian television this week. Or rather, comedian Mikhail Galustyan’s impression of Kadyrov has surprised and entertained the millions who tuned in this weekend to watch the 55th anniversary of Russia’s “KVN” comedy club, Kevin Rothrock writes for Global Voices. Political parody is a perilous thing in Russia, where the last unbridled satire

Fake: Former Ukrainian PM Yatseniuk Flees Ukraine

Citing a little known website as their source, scores of Russian media reported this week that former Ukrainian Prime Minster Arseniy Yatseniuk sold his business and  real estate holdings, fled Ukraine and is living in the U.S. with his family. This story first appeared on November 28, 2016 on a newsnet.hostenko aggregator site in two different versions. Both versions lack a byline, they refer to a source, but do not

Former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych

On November 25 former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych was to be questioned by a Kyiv court via video link from Russia. The questioning was postponed and the ousted leader gave a press conference in the Russian city Rostov na Donu in which he. During the press conference Yanukovych stuck to Russia’s official script about the events that took place during the 2013-2014 Maydan revolution, claiming that a power grab had

StopFakeNews #110 with Benjamin Cohen

The latest edition of StopFake News with Benjamin Cohen. Among the disinformation debunked this week. Russian Sputnik agency’s claims that life in Ukraine is worse than ever, an official Turkish delegation visiting Crimea turns out to be not so official, and in a first, a Russian site admits to a fake and apologizes. WOW!

Russia’s Sputnik Claims Life in Ukraine Worse than Ever

Russia’s government controlled news agency Sputnik declared this week that three years after the Maydan protests Ukraine was economically much worse than ever before. The source for this non-story is Kharkiv based translator Dennis Schedrivy, a purported citizen activist and blogger, whom official Russian media regularly cite in their Ukrainian disinformation mission. Schedrivy claims that Ukraine’s market is dead and that it is impossible to find work that is well

Fake: Turkish Delegation Arrives in Crimea

This week Russian media disseminated a story about a Turkish delegation visiting Crimea with the goal of deepening business and political relations between the Russia annexed Ukrainian peninsula and Turkey. The group said to be made up of some 22 politicians and businessmen allegedly included Turkish President Erdohan’s representative Ibrahim Erilli, Ankara deputy mayor Ahmet Tunc, the chairman of the Turkish Association of Eurasian Governments Hassan Cengiz. Russian media also

Fake: Ukraine to Stop Support for Crimean Tatar Mejlis

Russia’s Defense Ministry television channel Zvezda published a story this week claiming that Ukraine is reassessing its friendly relations with Turkey and considering ending its cooperation with the Crimean Tatar representative council the Mejlis. Zvezda does not cite any particular source for this claim and only generically refers to Ukrainian and European media. The story however appears to stem from a dubious Ukrainian site called uac-info.com  while the European media

Fake: The Exclusive Interview that Wasn’t

The Russian web publication Ukraina.ru published what it called an exclusive interview with prominent Ukrainian sociologist Iryna Bekeshkina in which she allegedly said that an artificial revolution supported from the outside was possible in Ukraine. The story was a complete fake as Bekeshkina had never been interviewed by the site and after she outed the fake in a Facebook post, the story was removed from the Ukraina.ru website, but remains

Russia’s disinformation activities and counter-measures in the Czech republic lessons for Georgia

Description The policy research paper by Tornike Zurabashvili for The Clarion, with financial support of the Black Sea Trust of the German Marshall Fund. Lessons learned in the Czech Republic in countering Russian propaganda and recommendations for Georgia. Published by The Clarion, project of the United Nations Association of Georgia (www.una.ge) Clarion Brief Zurabashvili Czech Counter-propaganda by The Clarion on Scribd By The Clarion

Rise of the fact-checker – a new democratic institution?

All across Europe, more and more independent fact-checking sites are launched to counter the move towards what some see as a post-fact or post-truth society. A new report by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism surveys the diverse and fast-changing landscape of fact-checking outlets in Europe. The report argues that independent fact-checking can help combat misinformation in public life, provided they can find funding for their work, either

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