Balkans Monitor 2/4/2023

Vanessa Tinker

12 April 2023, US envoy James P. Rubin, who heads the State Department’s Global Engagement Center, stated at a press release in Skopje, North Macedonia that the Western Balkan region was “pretty seriously poisoned” by Russia’s influence campaigns. He suggested the greatest threat facing the Western Balkans is Russian-disinformation and identified Serbia as the main hub from where misinformation and manipulation related to the region originate, and backed his claim with the fact that the Russian media that support the Kremlin still operate in Serbia. The US official shared his fear that Putin has intensified disinformation efforts since the war in Ukraine began. Rubin is also scheduled to visit Montenegro and Albania as part of his Western Balkans tour to counter disinformation.