Ivan PREOBRAZHENSKY: “Putin’s crony financed the elections to the European Parliament”

According to the Czech special services, a large network of Russian propaganda and influence on the EU has been uncovered on its territory. Putin’s crony, former Ukrainian politician Viktor Medvedchuk, is behind the creation of the network. His people were engaged in spreading the influence of the Russian Federation in Europe through the media and politicians.

As it was announced the day before, the Czech authorities imposed sanctions against the former leader of the pro-Russian Ukrainian party “Opposition Platform – For Life” Viktor Medvedchuk. Part of the justification for the sanctions states that Medvedchuk “directed the operation of Russian influence in the Czech Republic from the Russian Federation” in order to “violate the territorial integrity, sovereignty and freedom of Ukraine”.

To carry out his “operations” Medvedchuk used the news portal Voice of Europe, where his subordinate Artem Marchevsky worked. Naturally, both the portal and Marchevsky are also on the Czech national sanctions list.

According to the Czech counterintelligence agency BIS, Medvedchuk used Voice of Europe and Marchevsky for media propaganda in the Czech Republic itself and many other EU member states to directly finance cooperation with journalists, as well as to covertly financially support individual candidates in the European Parliament elections in order to support Russia’s foreign policy interests. The money was transferred in cash.

According to the Denik N newspaper, a website linked to Medvedchuk published calls for politicians to stop helping Ukraine. Some of them were paid sums that in some cases covered the costs of their election campaigns for the European elections in June. In particular, the Czech counterintelligence service informed Germany that Czech-born member of the Alternative for Germany party Petr Bystróń could receive money for the European Parliament elections in this way, and also the number 1 of the Alternative for Germany list in the European Parliament elections, Maximilian Krah, who, as colleagues say, is from Dresden, a nest of the German far-right, and, incidentally, is married to a Czech woman, cooperated with Medvedchuk’s media in the Czech Republic.

The money was transferred in cash during face-to-face meetings in Prague or via cryptocurrency. Politicians from Germany, Belgium, France, Hungary, the Netherlands and Poland received the payments. Czech politicians are not among those on the list, according to BIS, although some of them now have to publicly assure that they were just for fun, without money, Voice of Europe commented. The Czech counterintelligence agency says it has a list of all those who received cash from Russian agents of influence, but it is not going to publish it yet.

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