Wednesday, March 22, 2023

    SBU exposes over 1,000 Russian propagandists since 2022

    Oleksandr Melnychenko with the SBU’s Information Security Department says that, since 2022, about 1,200 Russian propagandists working across social media, who called for genocide and promoted war, have been exposed and documented.

    Melnychenko announced this during the Kyiv Stratcom Forum, which is organized by the Center for Strategic Communication and Information Security, reports.

    “Propaganda is as much a war crime as missile strikes on residential buildings and cyber attacks on critical infrastructure. For courts, be they Ukrainian or international, a legally conducted linguistic examination (of propaganda – ed.) is very important – and we’re doing this,” Melnychenko is quoted as saying by the Center for Strategic Communication.

    Ihor Solovei, head of the Center, believes that the West does not understand that there are no more “classic” journalists in Russia as such

    “In fact, these are operatives of the information units of Russia’s military-political leadership. Now they provide media coverage of hostilities – they cover the war and the situation in Russia itself. They are just as complicit in hostilities as those who run around Ukraine and press the trigger, fire tanks or launch missiles,” Solovei emphasized.

    Ben Heap, head of the Ukraine StratCom Partnership project at NATO’s Center of Excellence in Strategic Communications, noted that a number of European countries are still trying to figure out where the balance is between hate speech and freedom of speech. In his opinion, the problem lies in the legislation, which lags behind digital technologies by dozens of years.

    Kyiv Stratcom Forum is a two-day event hosted by the Center for Strategic Communication with the participation of Ukrainian high-ranking officials, international diplomats and communications experts. The purpose of the forum is to combine and exchange experience on approaches to countering hybrid aggression and building up strategic communications.

    It should be recalled that the SBU detained the abbot of the UOC (MP) temple, who was collecting intelligence on the defenses in Sumy region for Russia’s FSB.