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Ivan David from the SPD lies about Kremenchuk, saying that there was a weapons warehouse there. This has already been refuted by the BBC

Event recap

The attack on a shopping center in the central Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk took place on Monday, June 27, 2022. According to the command of the Ukrainian Air Force, this action was carried out by a Russian Federation Air Force Tupolev Tu-22M bomber, which fired a Ch-22 cruise missile at the center.

The attack took place in the afternoon after working hours, when a large number of people were shopping in the center (Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy estimated their number at a thousand). After the intervention, the building burst into flames, according to ČTK, the area of ​​the fire reached 10,300 square meters. According to the commander of the regional military administration of the Poltava region, Dmytro Lunin, this act has so far claimed 18 lives and at least 59 wounded.

Footage of the shopping center in Kremenchuk after the missile hit shocked even world leaders

Within hours of the attack, false and unsubstantiated claims that the attack was “fake” or “staged” began to circulate on the Internet. Such disinformation was spread, for example, by the deputy of the Russian ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, or by various Russian and pro-Russian channels of the Internet service Telegram – and repeated by Russian television.

On Tuesday, June 28, the Russian Ministry of Defense issued a statement saying that the shopping center “did not work” and that the fire was secondary to the bombing of a nearby ammunition depot, which subsequently exploded. Ukrainian representatives denied these claims, Ivan David, on the other hand, spreads them in the Czech Republic as the only true interpretation of events. And this despite the fact that a number of other independent sources refute the Russian version of the event.

No, the mall was not closed

So how is it in reality? Russian and David’s claim that the mall had been closed since March and was not operating as a store at the time of the attack is a lie. BBC reporters at the scene spoke to shoppers and staff who were inside the building at the time of the attack.

“A woman who lives in a nearby village and regularly goes shopping in Kremenchuk told the BBC that the mall was open all the time and that her family visited it at least once a week,” the BBC said in extensive material verifying all claims about the attack.

Firefighters search the ruins of a shopping center in Kremenchuk, Ukraine, in this photo taken on June 28, 2022. The center was hit by a Russian missile a day earlier.

Scary footage. A new video shows the impact of a rocket on a shopping center in Kremenchuk

The woman also shared a video she took at the mall on Saturday, June 25. The video shows shops open and people walking around inside the building. Other, similar footage posted online is from even more recent times – including a YouTube video, apparently shot just a day before the attack, which also shows shops open as usual.

Some pro-Russian channels on the Telegram network claimed that there were no women or children in the mall, and that this was because the building had been converted into a military facility. But even this claim is not true according to several eyewitnesses and online videos.

No, the fire did not start from the bombing of the weapons depot

According to the data obtained by the BBC, the statement of the Russian Ministry of Defense that the target of the bombing was a weapons warehouse and that the shopping center was set on fire only by the subsequent explosion of the bombed ammunition is not based on the truth.

“Weapons and ammunition of Western production collected in a warehouse, which were to be sent to the Ukrainian military group in Donbass, were hit by a high-precision strike,” the Russian Ministry of Defense said. Ukrainian officials have denied that there is a weapons depot nearby.

CCTV footage taken near a pond about 600 meters north of the mall, on the other side of the factory building, showed two rocket attacks in the area.

Comparing the CCTV footage of where the two shots landed with aerial images of the area, one shot appears to have hit an area near the east end of the mall, while the other hit the north end of the factory near the south edge of the pond. Satellite images of the area provide additional evidence that the rockets did indeed hit these locations.

The factory mentioned by the Russian Ministry of Defense is located about 300 meters north of the shopping center. The buildings are separated by a wall, vegetation and tracks, making claims that “secondary explosions” caused the mall fire (with many casualties) unlikely.

Firefighters search the ruins of a shopping center in Kremenchuk, Ukraine, in this photo taken on June 28, 2022. The center was hit by a Russian missile a day earlier.

Russian attack on shopping mall in Kremenchuk: Death toll rises to 18

According to the Ukrainian news website Kyiv Independent, a spokesperson for the regional administration confirmed that the machine plant had indeed been hit and that two people had been injured.

Svitlana Rybalková from the regional state emergency service denied that weapons were stored in the facility. “Road equipment, road construction machines are produced there,” Rybalková told the BBC. “There’s also a greenhouse nearby where workers grow cucumbers.”

Source: Youtube

A staged attack? The Russians cannot prove this and deny it

Also undocumented – and contrary to the official statement of the Russian Ministry of Defense – is the claim of the deputy Russian ambassador to the UN, Dmitry Polyansky, who on Twitter called the attack in Kremenchuk “a new Ukrainian provocation in the style of Buchi”. “Ukraine will use this attack to attract as much attention as possible by publishing a false version of what happened,” Poljansky wrote. But he did not back up his words with anything concrete.

“No evidence that Ukraine bombed the center or that the attack was staged simply does not exist and has not been offered,” comments Poljansky’s words to the BBC. “It’s just the latest example of a common tactic used by supporters of the Russian government – to release multiple, conflicting stories without evidence immediately after an attack.”

Laboratory.  Illustrative photo.

MEP Ivan David shares misleading misinformation. They concern biolaboratories

The same tactic is applied in the Czech Republic by MEP Ivan David, who throughout the conflict in Ukraine presents an interpretation exclusively favorable to the Russian government as reality, without supporting his claims with any evidence and without taking into account information that corrects this interpretation.

For example, in March of this year, he spread misinformation according to which the United States financed secret biolaboratories in Ukraine, or a purposefully edited video giving the impression that Karel Rožánek, a reporter for the Czech Television in Moscow, claims the same thing as Russian propaganda about the war in Ukraine.

Diary against fake news.Diary against fake news.Source: DiaryIn both cases, it was a misleading context: Karel Rožánek was actually only answering a question about how Russian state media and Russian institutions describe the invasion of Ukraine, so it was not about expressing his opinion or spreading information about the real situation in Ukraine, but about reinterpreting what what Russian propaganda claims about this situation.

And there was nothing secret about said biolaboratories. “These are all public health laboratories and veterinary laboratories. None of them have ever been involved in biological warfare,” Gregory Koblentz, director of the Biodefense Graduate Program at George Mason University, told Politifact in March.

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