France on Thursday, November 9, “firmly” condemned the role of a Russian network in “the artificial amplification and first-time dissemination on social networks of photos of tags representing Stars of David” in Paris, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The press release accuses the Russian network Recent Reliable News (RRN) and considers that “this new operation of Russian digital interference against France testifies to the persistence of an opportunistic and irresponsible strategy aimed at exploiting international crises to sow confusion and to create tensions.
The alleged sponsor of the Stars of David sprayed in Paris had “the sole aim of inspiring and supporting the Jews of Europe”, according to information from BMF TV. The businessman in his fifties was identified by investigators: he would be Anatoli Prizenko, according to information from Le Monde and Europe 1.
Several dozen stencilled blue Stars of David were discovered on October 31, on the facades of buildings in the 14th arrondissement of Paris and in other places in Paris and the suburbs. An investigating judge was appointed on Tuesday to identify the authors of the tags and understand their intentions, the possibility of an order coming from abroad being "not excluded" at this stage, according to a press release from the French justice system, who considered that this marking could have “been carried out at the express request of a person residing abroad”. “Regarding the facts themselves, the ongoing judicial investigation will have to establish the possible responsibility of a foreign sponsor,” noted the ministry on Thursday.
But Viginum, a French body which monitors foreign interference, detected “the involvement of a network of 1095 bots on the X platform” (formerly Twitter) having published 2589 posts linked to these tags, he added. Furthermore, “while the first authentic publication of the photos of the tags seems to have taken place on October 30 (...), Viginum identified the first publications of the RRN bot network from October 28 (...) i.e. almost 48 hours ago Before".
These tags caused great emotion in France, against a backdrop of a major increase in anti-Semitic acts since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas. On Thursday, before the publication of this press release from France, Russian diplomacy denied any link with the tags, considering that the suspicions targeting Moscow, already relayed in the French press in recent days, were “stupid” and “unworthy”.