Fact Check: Russia Has NOT Offered And Bulgaria Has NOT Refused Humanitarian Aid For Flood-Affected Areas  

проверка на факти

  • от: Lead Stories автор
Fact Check: Russia Has NOT Offered And Bulgaria Has NOT Refused Humanitarian Aid For Flood-Affected Areas   No Aid Offer

Did the Russian ambassador in Bulgaria, Eleonora Mitrofanova, say that Bulgaria refused Russian humanitarian aid for flood-affected settlements? No, that's not true: Russia has not offered humanitarian aid or any other type of help to Bulgaria after the serious floods that occurred in mid-June 2023 in some regions. Mitrofanova did not make a statement accusing the Bulgarian government of refusing aid.

The claim appeared in a video on TikTok (archived here) published by @dyteop1qmi6 on June 19, 2023.

The text overlay reads (translated from Bulgarian to English by Lead Stories staff):


Russia offered help! You condemn the suffering Bulgarians in the flooded villages to death.

A male voice in the video says (translated from Bulgarian to English by Lead Stories staff):

What is wrong with you people? Isn't the Bulgarian people the most important for you?

He continues:

How can you, in such a dire situation, have the audacity to refuse help from the only ones who offer it to us? Why didn't you ask the victims of the floods if they support your decision to refuse aid from Russia?

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

Screenshot 2023-06-28 at 7.58.51.png

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Wed Jun 28 09:39:51 2023 UTC)

No official publications or announcements supporting this claim have been made. A search for different types of phrases or combinations of phrases from both the title of the article and the claim in the video using Google News' index of thousands of credible news sites did not return any results.

Lead Stories traced the source of the claim to a website with no contact information, known for spreading fake news. The posts shared on social media copy the website's text, which started operating around May 2023 and had been gaining popularity in pro-Russian news-sharing social media groups for several months. According to the published article that can be seen here, Russia offered eight rescue teams to Bulgaria, which the Bulgarian government refused.

The assessment of the amount of damage in one of the largest municipalities affected by the floods is around 6 million Bulgarian lev (BGN) or about $3.3 million. No injured people or situations would require rescue teams or operations with international participation.

Interior Minister Kalin Stoyanov reported to the Bulgarian parliament that only three of the affected municipalities had requested financial assistance, according to a Novini article dated June 22, 2023. Those affected by the floods will be compensated, with each person receiving individual financial aid and additional aid for purchasing household appliances.

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