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EU Parliament: fake news, MEPs urge social media to “cooperate in countering disinformation”

(Brussels) The resolution on “disinformation”, adopted by the European Parliament by a large majority today, points to the “highly dangerous nature of Russian propaganda” as the main source of disinformation in Europe. Disinformation cases attributed to Russian sources have more than doubled since January 2019 (998) compared to the same period in 2018 (434 cases). The resolution condemns the increasingly “aggressive actions” of “non-European countries seeking to undermine the sovereignty of EU accession countries in the Western Balkans and Eastern partnership countries”. In order to cope with this situation, the EP calls for “an upgrade of the EU East StratCom Task Force to a permanent structure with significantly higher financing”. Social media are called upon to “cooperate in countering disinformation, without undermining freedom of speech”. And the EU should “create a legal framework to counter hybrid threats” (cyber attacks and disinformation). Finally, MEPs call for the establishment of a special parliamentary committee on foreign electoral interference and disinformation. By 2020, more than 50 elections (presidential, national, local or regional) will be held across EU Member States.

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