The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine denied information disseminated by the Russian media about the death of a child in a part of Donetsk region not controlled by the Ukrainian government, allegedly as a result of an alleged strike by a drone of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the village of Oleksandrivske.
"Stopfake debunked this story as fake. Witnesses recounted what had actually happened which was that the child in question had died from a mine explosion that had been uncovered in a garage. Moreover, Oleksandrivske is located 30 kilometers away from the Ukrainian positions. Neither of the Ukrainian Armed Forces UAVs would have been able to fly that far," Spokesperson of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry Oleh Nikolenko said on Facebook on Tuesday.
The spokesperson said "fake news stories about murdered children constitute an integral part of Russian psychological operations against Ukraine." "We all remember the infamous 'crucified' boy in Slovyansk. Just as back then, the current fake news story is aimed at inciting hatred in the occupied territories of Ukraine and in Russia, distorting the reality, and justifying provocations by Russian armed groups," the Foreign Ministry spokesperson said.
He said that it is precisely for this reason, Ukraine emphasizes to its international partners that when Russia undermines the security situation in the East, its information troops attempt to lay the groundwork by forming a media "backdrop" to justify the crimes of the Russian army. The story of a child from Oleksandrivske serves as yet another example of this template for such operations, the spokesperson said.
"Our strategic partners understand this perfectly and reject Russian-generated fake news stories. Russian fake news stories can be neutralized only through systematic work. Over many years of war, Ukraine has built up a significant level of expertise at the level of non-governmental organizations. Specialized centers for countering disinformation are starting to operate in Ukraine. We are also working on other international initiative," Nikolenko said.