Ukraine is planning to massacre Russians in Crimea, according to pro-Kremlin propaganda, which deliberately misquotes the head of Ukraine's intelligence agency.
Propaganda: The Ukrainian army will kill Russian-speakers in Crimea.
NEWS: "The Ukrainian Armed Forces can target any location in the Crimean Peninsula to destroy their enemy, Kyrylo Budanov, the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate within the Ukrainian Defense Ministry has told media outlets considered to operate as foreign agents. [...] “Is he actually willing to open fire on their own citizens? They believe Crimea is theirs, which means it is inhabited by their own citizens. Perhaps they operate according to a different logic”, one of the users of the social media reacted.
The director of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry also promised a new terrorist attack will be staged this summer on the Crimean bridge”, Ukraina.ru writes, mentioning Kyiv's plans to take revenge on every Russian speaker on the peninsula.
“According to the Ukrainian terrorist, Ukrainian authorities will organize propaganda events similar to the Crimea Platform with a view to occupying the peninsula”, the CRIMEA NEWS portal writes, headlining “Budanov threatens to kill the Russian speakers in Crimea”.
NARRATIVE: Ukraine announces a massacre of the Russian speakers in Crimea.
Fact: Kyrylo Budanov referred only to Russian military forces and objectives, targeted as part of the campaign to liberate Crimea.
WHY THE NARRATIVE IS FALSE: In fact, in the interview he gave to Radio Free Europe, the director of the Main Intelligence Director of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, Kyrylo Budanov, said that Ukrainian servicemen can target anyone in Crimea target in Crimea, highlighting the consolidation of the army's positions. Budanov referred to military targets, also discussing the Ukrainian Armed Forces' plans to destroy air defense systems in western Crimea. In the context of neutralizing part of Russia's military capacity to take down Ukrainian missiles and drones, the head of Ukrainian intelligence said that “right now, we can target any part of the temporarily occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea. We can strike our enemy anywhere they are”.
Kyrylo Budanov addressed Russian collaborators and representatives of the occupation authorities, urging them to prepare for evacuation, or else they will be court marshalled. “Those who erred too many times had better leave the peninsula", the Ukrainian official stated, adding he is in favor of “a less bloody liberation” of Crimea.
The Russian propaganda took the statement out of context and deliberately misrepresented it, writing that Ukrainian authorities will massacre the Russian-speaking population of Crimea. Budanov never made any explicit threat against the Russians and or the Russian speakers in Crimea, but he merely referred to the collaborators of the occupation forces, servicemen arriving from Russia or those who have committed war crimes on Ukrainian territory and are currently deployed to Crimea.
Ukraina.ru quotes a commentary on a social networking site, without specifying its name, which accuses Budanov of supporting the killing of his own compatriots. The pro-Kremlin publication calls the head of Ukrainian intelligence “a terrorist” who coordinates various terrorist attacks against Russian speakers. Most of these claims are not substantiated by any facts or evidence, but are simply the opinions of newsrooms, designed to generate anti-Ukrainian attitudes. In fact, attacks targeting bridges or railway junctions in Crimea are meant to neutralize Russia's military capabilities and disrupt its logistic supply chains. The Ukrainian army doesn't want to kill civilians, but to pave the way for its operations designed to liberate Ukrainian territories occupied by the Russian army.
In fact, Veridica has disproved other false narratives regarding Ukraine’s efforts to liberate occupied territories. According to Russian propaganda, Ukrainian authorities will organize a large-scale genocide against the Russian people, planning to kill 5,000 people every day. Russian media also wrote that American experts believe the news about the atrocities committed by Russian servicemen were fabricated by Ukrainian propaganda. Another false propaganda narrative states that the UN admitted that the Ukrainian army is bombing schools or is using them for military purposes.