Disinfo: Russia is not involved in the MH17 crash, this can be seen at the hearings in Schiphol

Summary

Hearings in Schiphol in the case of the 2014 crash of flight MH17, show that there is no evidence of Russia’s guilt. There are only assumptions and statements by Ukrainian and American politicians. There is no real evidence of Russia’s involvement in the crash of MH17.

Disproof

Recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative on the downing of flight MH17 over Ukraine, aiming to discredit the criminal trial and the Joint Investigation Team (JIT).

In March this year, the District Court of The Hague began hearing the case of the crash of flight MH17 in the sky over Donbas. The Schiphol Judicial Complex, located near the Hague, has been reserved for one year for the MH17 case. The second block of court hearings in the MH17 case began on June 8, 2020. In the opening session, held on 9 March 2020, the public prosecutor brought charges against the four suspects and provided an explanation of the case to the court. On 8 June, when the hearings were resumed, the prosecutors presented the various investigations and explained how these were conducted. Prosecutors also presented an investigation of telecommunications, radar and satellite data, explaining the main and alternative scenarios. Another court hearing in the MH17 case began on Friday, July 3. The court has considered whether additional investigation is necessary at this stage in the case. The prosecution has indicated that in its view the investigation is basically complete, and the defence contests this. The defence would like 'alternative scenarios' to be investigated.

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) investigated the case, collected evidence and reached clear conclusions: flight MH17 was shot down by a missile from the 9M38 series, which was launched by the BUK TELAR system. The system was transported from the Russian Federation to an agricultural field near the city of Pervomaiskiy in Eastern Ukraine, from where the rocket was launched. After firing, the system returned to the Russian Federation with one missing missile. On May 24 2018, JIT announced in its conclusion that the Buk belongs to the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade, a unit of the Russian armed forces in Kursk, Russian Federation. The fact that other investigators from the media and society also found evidence and uncovered the responsibilities of different persons in the chain of command that led to the tragedy, doesn't imply that the JIT didn't work or that none of the evidence is valid.

In the Netherlands, on 19 June 2019, the Joint Investigation Team presented new findings of their investigation into the crash of the Malaysian Airlines' Boeing-777 in the sky over the Donbas in 2014. The suspects are three Russians: Igor Girkin, Sergey Dubinsky, Oleg Pulatov and a citizen of Ukraine, Leonid Kharchenko. According to international investigators, all the suspects at the time of the MH17 disaster were in the east of Ukraine, where they could play an important role in the tragedy. The same names were revealed during an investigation by the independent group Bellingcat.

On top of that, on 10 July 2020, the Dutch government decided to bring Russia before the European Court of Human Rights for its role in the downing of Flight MH17. As stated on the government's website, it "attaches importance to continuing the meetings with Russia on the matter of state responsibility. The purpose of these meetings is to find a solution that does justice to the enormous suffering and damage cause by the downing of Flight MH17."

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 205
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 04/07/2020
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine, The Netherlands
  • Keywords: War in Ukraine, Donbas, MH17
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The UN mission has unhindered access to the Crimea

The UN mission has unhindered access to Crimea. Since 2014, despite invitations from the Crimean and Russian authorities, no UN representatives have ever visited the peninsula.

Disproof

After the annexation of Crimea, Russia closed access to the peninsula for any international observers. The UN General Assembly has repeatedly called on the Kremlin to provide free access to the occupied Ukrainian territory in resolutions A/RES/71/205 (2016),  A/RES/72/190 (2017), A/RES/73/263 (2018), A/RES/74/168 (2019).

Also, in numerous reports of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, it was noted that Russia refuses to fulfil its obligations under international human rights law in the Crimea and does not agree to ensure the proper, unhindered access of international monitoring missions to Crimea.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine acknowledged that Ukraine has lost Crimeans forever

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine acknowledged that Ukraine has lost the Crimeans forever. Ukraine needs to fight not for the Crimean population, but for the territory itself because the people receive Russian information and do not have access to Ukrainian propaganda. This was stated by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba in the interview with “Krym.Realii”.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the annexation of Crimea.

There was never a statement from the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba in the interview with “Krym.Realii” that Ukraine has "lost" the inhabitants of Crimea. He also did not say that "there is no need for Kyiv to fight for the population of the peninsula." According to Kuleba, it is difficult for Kyiv to fight for human consciousness in Crimea because the authorities do not have physical access there.

UN lies about violation of human rights in Crimea

The United Nations is politicised and goes on about Ukraine. UN representatives in their reports on the Crimea use fake information. The annual reports of the UN contain fictitious horrific statistics and false facts about the difficult life of Crimeans, Crimean Tatars

Disproof

Pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about Crimea.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres published a second report on the human rights situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, which Russia annexed in 2014. The report covers the period from July 1 to December 31, 2019, and is based on monitoring and documenting violations of human rights and international humanitarian law in Crimea. The report deals with torture and ill-treatment of Crimeans by the FSB of Russia, violations of the rights of detainees, including systematic beatings, unreasonable personal searches, refusal to meet with relatives and lawyers, charges of publishing on social networks and interfering with the work of journalists; about the military draft in the ranks of the army of the occupier and about many other violations of Russia in Crimea.