Czech government sanctions website for alleged pro-Russian influence ahead of EU election

Prime Minister Petr Fiala stated that the sanctioned web activities aimed to boost Russian influence in the EU and the European Parliament, based on Czech secret service agency BIS findings.


The Czech government has taken action by sanctioning individuals, including Viktor Medvedchuk and the website, over their alleged involvement in a pro-Russian influence operation in Europe spreading disinformation. According to the Czech Foreign Ministry, the campaign aimed to undermine Ukraine’s territorial integrity, sovereignty, and liberty.

Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala has underscored that the activities of the sanctioned individuals were aimed at bolstering Russian influence in the EU countries and the European Parliament, based on findings from the Czech secret service agency BIS.

Medvedchuk, a former Ukrainian politician now residing in Russia, stands accused of covertly financing Voice of Europe to sway the European Parliamentary election. Financial accounts associated with the implicated individuals and entities will be frozen as part of the sanctions.

Why does it matter?

The development comes shortly after the European Parliament, and experts warned of expected attempts to undermine the upcoming EU elections in June and deter voter turnout through disinformation campaigns. Despite efforts to combat disinformation through tools like the Digital Services Act, challenges still need to be addressed in effectively countering misleading narratives, especially in the limited timeframe leading up to the elections.