MOSCOW (Sputnik) — By creating a website intended for tackling the Russian media's alleged dissemination of fake news, the European Union is wasting its resources and further ratchets up tensions between Moscow and Brussels that may lead to a new Cold War, a member of the European Parliament told Sputnik on Wednesday.
"We already possess an institution in which to combat the spread of lies and disinformation i.e. civil society. A free press, as well think tanks and other NGOs are more than capable of providing fact checking… By creating a government institution for a role that should be handled by civil society they are taking another step on the path to a New Cold War," Beatrix von Storch said.
The lawmaker added that even though the website is unlikely to have an impact on European society, "the waste of resources on such ventures is real."
"This latest encroachment by the EU is simply a veiled attempt to create a Ministry of Truth," von Storch pointed out, referring to the ministry of propaganda depicted in George Orwell's dystopian novel "1984."
On Tuesday, the East Stratcom Task Force, created by the European External Action Service (EEAS), launched the euvsdisinfo.eu website aimed at tackling the "disinformation" spread by Russia, which has already prompted criticism even among EU lawmakers.
The East StratCom Task Force, created in 2015, consists of communication experts from EU institutions, which fund their activities for short-term projects.
The project is not the first EU initiative aimed against Russian media outlets. In November 2016, the European Parliament voted in favor of a resolution to counter the alleged Russian anti-EU propaganda and media. The resolution accuses the Kremlin of funding anti-EU political parties and movements inside the bloc.