09:43 GMT +327 March 2017
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    What's Behind False Claims of Russian Special Forces Deployment to Egypt

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    Earlier this week, Reuters reported that Russia deployed a special forces unit of 22 members and several drones to an Egyptian air base, near the border with Libya. The agency cited unnamed US and Egyptian military and diplomatic sources.

    The Russian Defense Ministry has already denied Russian military presence in Egypt, saying that certain media outlets had been "stirring the public with such mud-slinging from anonymous sources for years."

    Vladimir Dzhabarov, first deputy chairman of the Federation Council's Committee for International Affairs, told Sputnik that Russia has not sent military specialists and drones to any airbase in Egypt.

    "Russia did not do that. The defense ministry does not confirm it. It’s fake news that we don't need to pay attention to," Dzhabarov said.

    According to the lawmaker, such "stovepiping" is part of an information "war of all against all."

    In turn, Viktor Ozerov, the chairman of the Russian upper house of the parliament’s defense committee, described the allegations as a continuation of anti-Russian rhetoric and an attempt to discredit Russia in terms of the use of its military forces abroad.

    In an interview with Radio Sputnik, Ivan Konovalov, director of the Center of Strategic Environment think-tank, noted that there have already been reports that Russia was allegedly in talks with Egypt on deploying military facilities on Egyptian territory.

    "Recently, there were several reports that Moscow planned to establish a military base in the Egyptian city of Sidi Barrani. During the Soviet era, there was a Russian military base there. So, there have already been such information attacks. But the recent report by Western media is weird – just 20 special forces officers and several drones. What a strange unit," the expert pointed out.

    According to Konovalov, the goal of this disinformation campaign is to show that Russia is restoring its influence in the Mediterranean, North Africa and the Middle East.

    "They’re trying to fantasize where Russia may deploy its forces, in a bid to completely revive its influence, like it was in the Soviet epoch," the expert said.

    Libya has been torn apart by internal conflict since 2011, when the civil war broke out culminating in the demise of longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi. In December 2015, the United Nations brokered the agreement to establish the Government of National Accord (GNA), which was meant to reconcile Libya’s rival governments — the Council of Deputies based in Tobruk and the Tripoli-based General National Congress. The GNA's Presidential Council was supposed to offer representation to members of Libya's conflicting groups, but the GNA has been struggling to make progress in truly uniting the country.

    Related:

    No Russian Special Forces in Egypt - Russian Defense Ministry
    Reports on Russian Forces Deployment in Egypt Aimed at Escalating Tensions
    Russia Did Not Send Military Experts or Drones to Airbase in Egypt – Lawmaker
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    Russia, Libya, Egypt
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    • avatar
      TravelAbout
      So what if it is true? What business is it of the US if Russia was invited by the Egyptian government? Typical US hypocrisy whilst having illegal troops in Syria.
    • avatar
      ivanwa88
      It can only mean that the UK yes the UK is planning with the French special forces which are already in Libya to cross over to Egypt and start a colour regime change and they certainly dont want Spetnaz there to have to confront or watch there backs more the point.
    • avatar
      ivanwa88
      If I was Russia I would reply "no were not but if your so concerned then it means we definitely should be".
    • avatar
      goldcamshaft
      The media whores play a significant role in the psychological warfare conducted by the west and especially that war-mongering country across the ocean. You see, if Russia has to reply to the false news every time, that puts them in a defensive position and attitude all the time. This will, in fact, clip the wings of Russia in a big way. For, if Russia wants to make a move of some sort employing some clandestine operations, they will have the disadvantage of having to answer to the shot in the dark questions.
      Russia should change their position and allow a third party that has no authority, but only recognition or influence, to make the denials, thus allowing them to continue work without any need to confirm or deny.
      I know a woman who, when she wants to find out information about a subject, she will broach the topic and give false information, hoping that the listener will correct her with the truth. This is called fishing.
      Let the west fish in western waters and catch bass but not Thymallus Baikalensis!
    • avatar
      cast235
      Where my comment went?

      Anyways, FAKE NEWS MEDIA, uses FAKE NEWS to extract reports. Get Russia etc to talk.

      Russia should do like TRUMP.. NO COMMENT!!!

      Likewise they may buy the news article, to encourage Rus media to ask more on the same topic.
      Russia should learn not to answer all questions. Specially on military.
    • Mikhas
      What's behind is that it probably is true. Russia has a history in both Libya and the next target on ziocon list -Algeria. NATO would hate to engage Russia on a multi-front level...
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