Russia will use information operations targeting European elections and Ukraine support – US

The US is closely monitoring Russian attempts to influence the 2024 European elections in a manner that disadvantages Ukraine.

On January 18, the chief of the State Department’s office for misinformation stated that the US anticipates Russia will launch “information operations” to influence European public opinion against Ukraine in the run-up to this year’s elections.

In 2024, many nations will have chosen new leaders. In June, the European voters will all cast their ballots to choose the European Parliament.

Jamie Rubin, special envoy and coordinator for the Global Engagement Center, stated that US adversaries, Russia and China, were working worldwide to pass off state propaganda as objective journalism by covering its sources.

Although Rubin refrained from naming specific nations, he stated that the EU, which rallied together with the US to oppose Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022 and had supplied Kyiv with military aid and other forms of assistance, is under the greatest threat this year.

“Russia is hoping that the number of elections in Europe this year could change what has been a remarkable coalition and disciplined opposition to its war. We do believe that the Russians will conduct information operations throughout Europe to try to change opinion on Ukraine during this election season.”

Jamie Rubin, US special envoy and coordinator for the Global Engagement Center

Read also: How Russian disinformation works in Europe: Babakov’s hacked emails

The GEC, responsible for identifying foreign disinformation campaigns, uncovered a Russian-financed operation that fed propaganda and misinformation to local news outlets across Latin America in 2023. Russia denied the accusations at the time.

In addition, over a hundred governments received a declassified intelligence report that confirmed Moscow is actively working to undermine public trust in democratic elections through the use of spies, social media, and Russian state-run newspapers.

The Russian government has been funding a disinformation campaign through media outlets across Latin America to undermine support for Ukraine and spread anti-US and anti-NATO sentiment among Latin American audiences, the US State Department said.

With heavy losses on the frontlines and no significant achievements, Moscow has resorted to its old weapons of propaganda and disinformation. But, it is struggling these days because, after witnessing the documented war crimes of the Russian troops, few people believe Moscow’s rhetoric any longer. It is mainly the electorate of the far right and far left, as well as conspiracy theorists and those fearful of the Kremlin’s nuclear blackmail.

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