Fake: Italian Journalist Claims Ukrainians Fighting on Side of ISIS

Italian journalist Lucia Goracci while reporting from the Syrian city of Aleppo points to graffitti written in Cyrillic, attributes it to Ukrainians and implies that they are most likely fighting on the side of ISIS.

In a news report aired on the Italian channel TG1 on February 14, 2016 Goracci points to writing on a demolished wall and says “This writing is in the Russian alphabet, it is the city of Lviv. Perhaps those who did this came from Ukraine to do jihad”.

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Goracci’s misleading and completely biased personal assumption is not supported by any evidence that is shown in her report.

The journalist clearly has limited knowledge of the Cyrillic alphabet. In Ukrainian, the city is called Lviv – Львів and in Russian Lvov Львов. What is written on the wall is actually Alov – Альов.

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Accusing Ukrainians of being ISIS members on the basis of five Cyrillic looking letters is not good journalism, it is not journalism at all, but rather evidence of a tendency on Italian state channels that echoes Kremlin rhetoric.

A basic Google search turns up several examples of persons named Alov – Альов. As Russian forces are present in Syria, perhaps one of them scribbled his name on the wall.

Lucia Goracci spent several months in eastern Ukraine covering the Russian invasion of the Donbas for RAI television. Her reports were always presented from the point of view of the separatists and from territory they captured, Goracci never reported from areas controlled by Ukrainian forces.