Saturday, November 7, 2020

Russia deploying disinformation to discredit Ukrainian defense industry

Russia has deployed a significant disinformation campaign against the Ukrainian defense industry to drive out the independent competitor.

The Russian disinformation campaign has pushed fake news online in Egypt, Algeria, India, Peru, Nigeria, Czech Republic, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia to discredit Ukraine as a reputable and reliable partner.

Russia is actively intervening in the information space of other countries where Ukraine claims to win a tender for the supply of goods intended for military use and dual-use items.

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Just last month, Russia, through its curators, transmitted false reports and information that Ukraine allegedly cannot guarantee the fulfillment of its obligations and ensure the supply of combat vehicles, engines for helicopters, or even transport aircraft.

As an example, in a matter of days, Egyptian and Ugandan media outlets began to widely circulate misinformation claiming that Ukraine does not have a license and the right to modernize Soviet infantry fighting vehicles. Also in Peru disseminated information that Ukraine could not produce the An-178 transport plane, which was officially denied by Antonov and SpetsTechnoExport.

Moreover, Russian hackers have been engaged in a sustained campaign to compromise news websites in European countries to plant false stories aimed at discrediting Ukraine.

Russian companies and businessmen, related to state-owned Russian weapons trading company, also appear to be recruiting actors on the ground and establishing satellite offices for its disinformation specialists.

Official Moscow does not confirm its participation in these media-marketing wars, but it is clearly seen that Russia is trying to knock Ukraine out of the market for the modernization of Soviet weapons and not give it a chance to gain a foothold with new products.

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