A Belarusian worked at the notorious Kremlin’s “troll breeding in Olgino”.
A person, Belarusian by birth, addressed to the charter97.org editorial staff, who worked at the den of trolls in Saint Petersburg.
Our sources provided performances objectives, working instructions, a list of forums and blogs, contacts, as well as reports on the work carried out. The documents date back to the period November 2013 – February 2014. Main topics in the work of the trolls were Ukraine and the EU, Obama, Syria, Russia’s domestic politics, improving the perception of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and personally Minister Shoygu. There are several task areas on Belarus (Uralkali, the cooperation of Belarus and the Russian Federation on countering the Eastern Partnership).
“There are materials that I obtained while working at the den of trolls in Saint Petersburg. Naturally, having worked there for a month, I quit, but I kept the documents and, looking at the events in Ukraine, decided to send them to you, although I could not make up my mind for a long time. In the archive there are performance objectives, some pictures and the list of live journal accounts, as well as the reports etc. The address and the place”, - said the former employee of the AIR.
We are talking about the Agency for Internet Research (AIR), which ended up in the center of scandals several times, and its operations were covered by media in detail. According to the data of the Anonymous International group, the key figure in supporting the activities of the “army of trolls” is Evgeniy Prigozhin (he is said to be Putin’s cook).
Each performance objective came along with a recommendation:
The performance objective document as of 8 November 2013 recommended to cover the Uralkali topic as follows:
“The Liberal Democratic Party of Belarus is not interested in holding the arrested Uralkali director Vladislav Baumgertner responsible. They are only interested in the reparation of damages, while the rest does not matter. Lukashenka wants, no more not less, from 1.5 to 2 billion dollars, at the same time saying he is not “blood-thirsty” and promises that after the compensation condition is fulfilled, Minsk will “find a way” and give out to Russia the “loved-by-all” Baumgertner. At the same time Lukashenka claimed that the businessman himself should put an effort into compensating the losses to Belorussia, “until the damage grows”. The actions of the Belarusian president can be called no other than blackmail today! But Lukashenka, apparently, does not understand that excessive politicization of Baumgertner’s arrest does not serve the interests of Russia and Belarus”.
The trolls used to work in a mansion in the district of Olgino (Saint Petersburg). According to our source, his floor alone had 25 people working. “No one knew the names of the managers, everyone signed a non-disclosure document”, - our reader tells.
A troll used to be paid 40 thousand Russian roubles a month, they fed them right at the working place.
We wondered, whether the AIR operated also on Belarusian information resources, for example, the Charter.
“No, only vk, livejournal and forums. Although, there were Belarusian topics, Uralkali to be precise, they would mock Lukashenka as hard as possible”, - the former AIR employee shares.
- Why did not you make up your mind to write to us earlier? Are there reasons to be careful not to?
- There are… I was afraid of being persecuted.