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U.S. warns of Russia's intentions to turn Europe against Ukraine in 2024 elections

U.S. warns of Russia's intentions to turn Europe against Ukraine in 2024 elections Russia will seek to sway Europeans against Ukraine (photo: Getty Images)

Russia is preparing information operations aimed at shaping public opinion against Ukraine ahead of the 2024 elections in European countries, states the head of the U.S. State Department's disinformation unit, James Rubin.

In 2024, dozens of countries around the world will be electing new leaders, including general elections in the United Kingdom, Austria, and Georgia, as well as elections to the European Parliament in June.

Jamie Rubin, the Special Envoy and Coordinator of the Global Engagement Center (GEC), has reported that Russia and China are working globally to disseminate state propaganda in support of independent journalism while concealing its true source.

"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," Rubin stated.

The Global Engagement Center, tasked with exposing foreign disinformation campaigns, declared last year that it had identified Russia spreading propaganda and misinformation through local media in Latin American countries. Russia dismissed these accusations as unfounded.

In a declassified intelligence assessment sent to over 100 governments worldwide in 2023, it was noted that Moscow employs spies, social media, and Russian state media to undermine public trust in the integrity of democratic elections.

Russian propaganda in European countries

In France, the far-right party National Rally and one of its leaders, Marine Le Pen, are suspected of connections with Russia. The allegations include contacts with the intelligence of a foreign state, passing information to a foreign state, corruption, and abuse of trust.

Russian propaganda projects abroad are deliberately influencing Ukrainian refugees. From the early days of the war, the Russian Orthodox Church opened Saturday schools for Ukrainian children.

In Czechia, Russian disinformation websites and certain political forces are exploiting the influx of refugees to fuel social tension.