TurkeyMarch 15 2022, 12:42 pm

GIOR Investigation: US-Designated Russian Influence Actor Controlled by Turkish Political Party

A GIOR inves­ti­ga­tion demon­strates that Unit­ed World Inter­na­tion­al, a web­site sanc­tioned by the US Trea­sury as a Russ­ian-backed influ­ence actor, appears to be con­trolled by a pro-Russ­ian Turk­ish polit­i­cal par­ty. Accord­ing to the US Depart­ment of the Trea­sury release:

March 3, 2022: In 2020, media influ­ence orga­ni­za­tion Project Lakhta, owned by Prigozhin, devel­oped a new web­site, Unit­ed World Inter­na­tion­al (UWI). Since at least 2014, Project Lakhta has used among oth­er things, fic­ti­tious online per­sonas that posed as U.S. per­sons to inter­fere in U.S. elec­tions, as the IRA did dur­ing the 2016 U.S. elec­tion. In 2022, UWI sug­gest­ed that Ukraine would “per­ish” if it is admit­ted to NATO. UWI’s chief edi­tor, Darya Alek­san­drov­na Dug­i­na (Dug­i­na), sought con­trib­u­tors to write arti­cles on UWI. Dugina’s father, Alexan­der Dug­in (Dug­in), was first des­ig­nat­ed in 2015 pur­suant to E.O. 13660 for being respon­si­ble for or com­plic­it in actions or poli­cies that threat­en the peace, secu­ri­ty, sta­bil­i­ty, or sov­er­eign­ty or ter­ri­to­r­i­al integri­ty of Ukraine.

Read the rest here.

Yevge­ny Prigozhin was iden­ti­fied in GIOR report­ing as a Russ­ian oli­garch pre­vi­ous­ly des­ig­nat­ed for fund­ing the Russ­ian troll farm known as the  Inter­net Research Agency.

In response to the sanc­tions, the Unit­ed World Inter­na­tion­al (UWI) state­ment says that UWI is “part of” the Görev Foun­da­tion. The Görev Foun­da­tion’s Chair­man is Erkan Önsel, a Cen­tral Exec­u­tive Board mem­ber of the Patri­ot­ic Par­ty (Turk­ish: Vatan Par­tisi). The Patri­ot­ic Par­ty describes itself as a nation­al­ist, pop­ulist, and social­ist Turk­ish polit­i­cal par­ty whose goals include Turkey leav­ing NATO. The par­ty also advo­cates a “Eurasian­ist” ide­ol­o­gy, also asso­ci­at­ed with Alexan­der Dug­in, said to be a sig­nif­i­cant influ­ence on Russ­ian Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin. Turk­ish Eurasian­ism would involve sev­er­ing rela­tions with the EU and Unit­ed States and strength­en­ing ties with Rus­sia and Chi­na. The par­ty is led by Doğu Per­inçek, who has said he is friends with Dug­in. Turk­ish state media have report­ed that Per­inçek had very close links to high-lev­el offi­cials in the for­mer Sovi­et Union, and media have said he has gained sig­nif­i­cant influ­ence over Turk­ish for­eign pol­i­cy since he aligned with Turk­ish Pres­i­dent Erdoğan in 2014. The Patri­ot­ic Par­ty has fur­ther ties to the Görev Foun­da­tion, including:

  • Per­inçek spoke at the foun­da­tion’s most recent Gen­er­al Assem­bly meeting.
  • Per­inçek’s wife, Şule Per­inçek, is the head of the foun­da­tion’s project to found a uni­ver­si­ty and on the par­ty’s Cen­tral Exec­u­tive Board.

Also, some of UWI’s experts have also had lead­ing posi­tions in the Patri­ot­ic Party.

UWI’s home­page con­tains sev­er­al arti­cles echo­ing Russ­ian talk­ing points on Ukraine, such as claim­ing the war is based on Russ­ian secu­ri­ty inter­ests and defeat­ing Ukrain­ian “Nazis.”


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