Fresh Russian fakes for French-speaking audience

Fresh Russian fakes for French-speaking audience

Propagandists used far-right politician Florian Philippot and forged French Interior Ministry document

The French branch of the Kremlin's Russia Today and its satellite Sputnik Africa are distributing to the French-speaking audience a fragment of an interview with French far-right politician Florian Philippot. The video is also shared on pro-Russian French-language Telegram channels and TikTok.

In the interview, Philippot claims that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky allegedly lost his legitimacy on March 31, 2024.

Philippot's statement is fake. He manipulates, claiming that the elections did not take place because of martial law, which Zelensky himself introduced. However, he completely forgot to add that this happened because of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Conducting presidential elections in Ukraine under martial law is directly prohibited under Article 19 of the Law of Ukraine "On the Legal Regime of Martial Law."

On February 27, 2024, the Intelligence Committee under the President of Ukraine reported that in March-May, the Russian special services would make every effort to destabilize the situation in Ukraine. The issue concerns the final stage of the special operation "Maidan-3," which the enemy has been implementing for the past few months and whose total budget is $1.5 billion. One of the main information strikes will be directed at Ukraine's political leadership.

Philippot is operating as part of this campaign.

The peak of Philippot's career was in 2012-2017 when he was elected as a member of the European Parliament and held senior positions in Marie Le Pen's National Front party, one of Russia's main sympathizers in the EU.

Due to political differences, in 2017 Philippot created his own Eurosceptic party "The Patriots." Its main goal is Frexit, i.e. France's exit from the EU. With his party, Philippot lost the European Parliament elections in 2019, gaining only 0.65%.

He hoped to run for president in 2022, but was able to attract only one sponsor when a minimum of 500 is required.

Gradually, he turned into a person who simply earns money from politics. His party has almost no permanent members, and party tickets are sold for money directly on the official website. The price ranges from 10 to 300 euros. Also, these party members are not prohibited from having another party ticket.

Spreading fakes is nothing new for Florian Philippot. In 2020, he became one of the main anti-vaxxers in France and spread misinformation about COVID-19. After Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, he began spreading Russian narratives. Philippot publicly suggests to stop helping Ukraine with money and weapons and negotiate with Russia.

Moreover, he supports the theory of the Russian Investigative Committee that the terrorist attack at the Crocus City Hall near Moscow was ordered by someone from Ukraine.

Also, in one of his posts on X, he wrote "To the last Ukrainian," commenting on the law signed by Volodymyr Zelensk to lower the military mobilization age from 27 to 25 years.

Another "document" being distributed by Russian media outlets and pro-war Telegram channels is related to this. They publish an alleged decree of the French Interior Ministry that from April 3, 2024, citizens of Ukraine who are over 25 years old will stop being registered as refugees in the French Republic.

This is a fake. French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin reported this on X.

Russian propagandists forged the 2008 document, which can be easily found on the internet, changing the source number, text and signature of the minister.

Andriy Olenin

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