Russia risking lives by running disinformation campaign against vaccines: US

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Mar 09, 2021, 08:22 AM(IST)

Covid vaccine (representative image). Photograph:( Reuters )

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The Global Engagement Center, an extension of the State Department entrusted with the duty of monitoring foreign propaganda said that Russian intelligence was linked to four platforms running a campaign against vaccines

The United States on Monday called out Russia for its disinformation campaign against COVID-19 vaccines made in the US. 

Recently, the Global Engagement Center, an extension of the State Department entrusted with the duty of monitoring foreign propaganda said that Russian intelligence was linked to four platforms running a campaign against vaccines. US said that Moscow is putting lives at risk.

The four platforms "included disinformation about two of the vaccines that have now been approved by the FDA in this country," State Department spokesman Ned Price said to reporters.

"It is very clear that Russia is up to its old tricks, and in doing so is potentially putting people at risk by spreading disinformation about vaccines that we know to be saving lives every day," Price said.

The four online publications are Oriental Review, News Front, New Eastern Outlook, and Rebel Inside. The publications have focused on the side effects caused by Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine, along with jabs made by other major Western companies. 

Also read: EU regulator urges caution on Sputnik V, Russia's coronavirus vaccine

According to the report, the false information pertains to the efficacy of the vaccines, while highlighting how the vaccines had been rushed for approvals in the US.

Even though the sites do not have a large pool of audiences, officials claim that their stories are picked up by international media regularly.

Also read: Russia, Austria agree to talks on Sputnik V vaccine

The websites lay bare side effects caused by the vaccines, which have remained consistently rare while failing to provide accurate information about how the vaccines continue to remain safe for most people.

An official for the State Department told the Wall Street Journal that Russian intelligence services bear "direct responsibility" for employing the four platforms to spread "propaganda and lies''.

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