Kremlin critic and journalist Arkady Babchenko

Prominent Kremlin critic and journalist Arkady Babchenko staged his death with help from Ukrainian authorities to thwart an alleged Russian assassination plot. 

Assessment

Our assessment is that this incident can be construed as a case of “fake news” propagated by the Ukrainian government. The actions taken by authorities in Kiev could damage the reputation of the government and journalists. The Ukrainian government will have to justify its manipulation of the truth to the international community in order to restore its credibility. The event could now potentially be used as a defence by the Kremlin if Russia is accused of such events in the future.