The coronavirus is Ukraine’s retribution for the Donbas war sent from above, it is a reckoning for the country’s sins, claims the pro-Kremlin publication News Front. The European Union has closed its borders because of the coronavirus, leaving its partners to their own devices. By closing the Schengen zone borders they are spitting on Ukrainians and the current situation shows that the European dream of the Maydan Revolution does not exist, News Front claims.
The global coronavirus pandemic has been a leading story for well over a month and the Russian propaganda machine has issued many outrageous fakes on this theme, however claiming that the virus is a form of retribution for Ukraine is a first. According to such an argument we can contend that COVID 19 in Russia is Moscow’s heavenly punishment for the annexation of Crimea and the war in Donbas. The author of this claim conveniently forgets that the coronavirus pandemic is a world-wide phenomenon that has nothing to do with Russian aggression in Ukraine.
NewsFront’s characterization of EU moves to temporarily close its borders because of COVID 19 as being particularly insulting to Ukrainians is also complete hogwash. The temporary border closures are intended to slow down the spread of the virus but they have not stopped the movement of goods and services neither in EU countries nor in Ukraine.
The European Union has not turned away from Ukraine and “spat in Ukraine’s face” because of the pandemic crisis as News Front claims, but is continuing to support Ukraine through the pandemic with an 80 million Euro aid package. The funds are intended to support Ukraine’s health care system, increase international medical cooperation particularly to hospitals that are the first line of defense against the coronavirus. The EU is also helping Ukraine with various social issues such as elder care, online education, child care as well as credit support for small and medium businesses.
In total the European Union is dispensing 140 million euros to the Eastern Partnership countries for urgent needs in fighting the coronavirus. In addition to Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia and Moldova will also receive pandemic aid. In addition the European Commission will distribute 700 million Euro to help mitigate the socio-economic impact of the global pandemic.