Russian propaganda is working on splitting Ukraine, trying to divide Ukrainians into those who went abroad to escape the war, and those who stayed, Ukrinform reported, quoting the head of the state-run Center for Combating Disinformation (CCP), Lieutenant Andrii Kovalenko.

Kovalenko, who said that there’s “a lot of work to be done,” has hosted 20 YouTube videos, called “About the War,” with the Ukrainian state news agency over the past three months, highlighting Russian disinformation.

Now, the Russians are targeting Ukrainian opinion leaders abroad and attempting to create the perception that Ukraine is beset with oppression, Kovalenko said.

Kovalenko highlighted some of it: “You left and you are much smarter...They [the state] want all of you to be sent to the trenches...Your rights are violated...The state humiliates you...Europe protects you, and Ukraine oppresses you,” Kovalenko said.

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The propaganda attempts to portray the Kremlin as a legitimate power that needs to take control of Ukraine and free “zombified” Ukrainians of their oppressive state.

“More than a hundred years ago, they [the Soviet Union] also created an alternative to the UNR [the independent Ukrainian National Republic],” Kovalenko said, drawing a parallel between Russia’s attempt to portray Ukraine in the worst possible light with the Soviet Union’s attempts to portray the independent Ukrainian republic, the UNR, at the beginning of the 20th century as a miserable place and contrasting with the utopian communist Soviet Ukraine.

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