Disinfo: Downed MH17 trial is a show, the irrefutable evidence of Russia’s innocence is rejected


We have to admit that the Dutch side is turning this, no doubt, from an important event into a judicial television show, stretched over several seasons and with a known verdict. It is hardly possible to count on real justice. One of the intrigues is a list of material evidence attached to the case. For example, there are doubts that there will be the body of a Buk missile, which was presented to the world with fanfare at a press conference in May 2018 as part of the “same” missile that shot down the Boeing. Recall: then the Russian Ministry of Defense presented documents that irrefutably testify to the fact that it was a missile transported to Western Ukraine back in December 1986 and remained in service with the Ukrainian army after the collapse of the USSR. After that, the investigators “suddenly” sharply lost all interest in this material evidence.


The report advances recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation about the MH17 crash.

On the 24th of May 2018, the JIT announced its conclusion that the BUK TELAR used to shoot down MH17 came from the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade, a unit of the Russian armed forces from Kursk in the Russian Federation. On the basis of the investigation conducted by the JIT, the Dutch Public Prosecution service are prosecuting Igor Vsevolodovich Girkin, Sergey Nikolayevich Dubinskiy, Oleg Yuldashevich Pulatov, and Leonid Volodymyrovych Kharchenko for causing the crash of the MH17 and murdering the 289 persons on board. The public hearing started on March 9th 2020 in the Netherlands.

The "irrefutable evidence" claimed by Russia is only a small sample of misleading claims advanced by Moscow since 2015, some of which have contradicted one another. This disinformation article refers to the claim that the Buk was of "Ukrainian origin" (evidence advanced by Russia which Novaya Gazeta found to be fabricated).


  • Reported in: Issue 187
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 09/03/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Malaysia, Russia, Ukraine, The Netherlands
  • Keywords: MH17


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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OPCW smeared whistleblowers, doctored evidence to defend its biased Douma report

Ian Henderson and “Inspector B,” the former OPCW employees who have publicly questioned the organisation’s report into the alleged chemical attack in Douma, have demanded “a fair, transparent, and scientific hearing.”

The two whistleblowers participated in the mission on the ground (fact-finding mission, or FFM) to determine whether chemical weapons had actually been used by the Syrian government, but were later excluded from the process, while important facts were doctored and omitted from the final version of the OPCW report.

Apart from reiterating their calls for transparency and a scientific hearing, Henderson added new important details about the two cylinders from Douma. One of the most important findings by Henderson was that those cylinders, which rebel groups claimed had discharged chlorine killing several dozens of people, were in fact placed there intentionally, which means the whole “attack” was staged.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives attacking the independence and integrity of the OPCW; lending credence to the claim that the 2018 Douma attack was staged; and absolving the Syrian regime of responsibility for chemical attacks in general.

The second paragraph of the claim contains no less than four untrue, previously debunked assertions:

The promotion of the so-called Katyn affair, falsely attributed to NKVD, was approved by Hitler

The propaganda promotion of the so-called Katyn affair was approved by Adolf Hitler himself,

In 1943, near the small village of Katyn, 14 kilometers to the west of Smolensk, a mass grave of executed Polish prisoners of war was discovered in the Kozi Gory tract. An end has not yet been put to this tragic story. On April 13, Poland intends to conduct another anti-Russian campaign dedicated to the 80th anniversary of the Katyn crime.

Katyn was the work of the Nazis, and not the Stalinist leadership of the NKVD. This version, in fact, is confirmed by the verdict of the Nuremberg tribunal.

The Nuremberg International Military Tribunal indicted Herman Goering, number two, and Alfred Jodl, acting chief of the Wehrmacht’s High Command, for the Katyn crime. These are documented facts.


Recurrent historical whataboutism "Anti-Katyn" campaign intended to obscure events surrounding the Katyn massacre of 1940, when approximately 22,000 Polish citizens were murdered by the Soviet NKVD on the orders of Joseph Stalin. The attempts continue even when Russian authorities fully recognised the USSR's responsibility at official level.

By the decision of the President of Russia from April 28th 2010, electronic copies of documents about Katyn have been posted on the official website of the Federal Archival Agency.  The collection of documents includes the "Memorandum of the People's Commissar of Internal Affairs of the USSR L.P. Beria to I.V. Stalin with a proposal to entrust the NKVD of the USSR to consider to study in a special manner cases against Polish citizens held in prison camps of the NKVD of the USSR and prisons in the western regions of Ukraine and Belarus" from March 5th 1940. The verdict  execution, can be read on the 3rd page of the document, approved by Stalin. "Study in a special manner" is the term meaning the absence of a proper trial, in use during Stalin's purges. The Katyn crime was first recognised by the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in 1990. Russian Human Rights activists have been working since 1989 in order to collect full documentation, to pass Polish victims' descendants requests to the Russian authorities and to edit the complete list of Polish citizens subjected to repressions in the USSR, including in Katyn in 1940.

The West has planned the total destruction of Syria

The West has planned the total destruction of Syria. Syrians, Russians, Iranians, Shiites of Lebanon, Iraq and other countries, and also Turks have saved the country from the total destruction planned by the West.


Conspiracy theory. No evidence is given.

The article’s claim is consistent with the recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the alleged support provided by the US and other Western states to ISIS in order to destroy Syria.