Disinfo: The MH17 case is being dragged out due to new facts proving Moscow's innocence

Summary

The MH17 case is being dragged out due to new facts proving Moscow’s innocence, and may eventually reveal the truth about the real culprits of the Boeing crash near Donetsk.

Disproof

One of the multiple disinformation narratives on the downing of Flight MH17, denying Russia's responsibility. There is no new evidence or facts "proving Moscow's innocence" as claimed in the article. The Dutch-led criminal investigation by the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) has been ongoing since 2014. On 28 September 2016, the JIT announced that flight MH17 was shot down by a missile from the 9M38 series, which was launched by a BUK TELAR missile system. The system was transported from the Russian Federation to an agricultural field near the town of Pervomaiskiy in Eastern Ukraine, from where the missile was launched. After firing, the system, with one missing missile, went back to the Russian Federation. On 24 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, consisting of law enforcement agencies from Australia, Belgium, Malaysia, Ukraine and the Netherlands, the Dutch Public Prosecution Service will prosecute Igor Vsevolodovich Girkin, Sergey Nikolayevich Dubinskiy, Oleg Yuldashevich Pulatov and Leonid Volodymyrovych Kharachenko for causing the crash of Flight MH17 and murdering all 298 persons on board. The Public Prosecution Service alleges the four cooperated to obtain and deploy the BUK TELAR atthe firing location with the aim of shooting down an aircraft. The public hearing started on 9 March 2020 in the Netherlands. The European Union and NATO have called on the Russian Federation to accept its responsibility and to fully cooperate with all efforts to establish accountability. On the basis of the JIT’s conclusions, the Netherlands and Australia are convinced that Russia is responsible for the deployment of the Buk installation that was used to down MH17. The two governments are formally holding Russia accountable. 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 caused by the downing of Flight MH17."

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 215
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 30/09/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Russian
  • Country: The Netherlands, Russia
  • Keywords: Eastern Ukraine, Donbas, MH17
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Imperialistic Poland and Lithuania are the springboard for Belarusian Maidan

Poland and Lithuania are the springboards for Belarusian Maidan. The Belarusian opposition has long been based in Lithuania, whereas Poland has been making preparations for a Belarusian Maidan for years. Poland aims at putting its protégé on a throne and making Belarus its colony. This way, Warsaw plans to increase its role in the EU and to establish a bridgehead on Russian borders. It also wants to restore the Polish empire with a new ideological “sauce”.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Belarusian protests; and about imperial and colonial intentions of Poland and Lithuania, as well as about their anti-Russian activities. Poland fully supports the independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine and Belarus, it does not have any territorial claims against its neighbours and it rejects any “imperial” ambitions towards other countries. There is no evidence that Poland, Lithuania or any other Western governments including the US are involved in any way in the protests in Belarus. The European Council condemned the violence against peaceful protesters. "As the elections in Belarus were neither free nor fair, and did not meet international standards, the EU does not recognise the results presented by the Belarus authorities," states a European Council press release. On the 2nd October, the Council imposed restrictive measures against 40 individuals identified as responsible for repression and intimidation against peaceful demonstrators, opposition members and journalists in the wake of the 2020 presidential election in Belarus, as well as for misconduct of the electoral process. The large-scale Belarusian protests began in Minsk on August 9 against the results of the presidential election, and then in other cities. People revolted against election fraud and police violence towards thousands of rally participants. The US and NATO did not increase their military presence near the Belarusian borders following the elections. On 16 August, NATO dismissed allegations that it was conducting a military buildup near the country’s western border. See earlier disinformation cases claiming that the EU is trying to disrupt Belarus-Russia relations, that the West's only interest in Belarus is to make it anti-Russian, that Polish authorities are obsessed with an idea of reconstruction of a modern Polish empire, that Poland and Lithuania wish to colonise Belarus and Ukraine, and that Poland and Lithuania are destabilising Belarus to turn it into a Russophobic limitrophe.

Armenia and Azerbaijan are part of historic Russia, their independence is accidental

Russia will prevent a full-fledged protracted war between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Both countries are not just located in the Russian sphere of influence, but also belong to the post-Soviet space. Hence, they are part of historic Russia, be it the Russian empire or the USSR. Three decades of independence do not make Armenia and Azerbaijan accomplished sovereign states. Actual sustainable statehood does not stem from an accidental historical occasion such as the break up of the USSR. Armenians and Azeris received their countries largely accidentally.

Disproof

This is rare example of a pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the Russian world applied to Armenia and Azerbaijan. It is used much more often to denigrate the history and statehood of Belarus and Ukraine. Armenia and Azerbaijan are sovereign countries and are well-defined nation-states with a long history; both nations preserved language, literature and identity, despite foreign rule for long periods. The recent escalation in the Nagorno-Karabakh region is a continuation of the decades-old conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia. It is reported that nearly 100 people, including civilians, have died as of 29 September 2020. On 27 September, the EU High Representative Josep Borrell made a statement calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities, de-escalation and for strict observance of the ceasefire. The USSR collapsed as a result of many socio-economic and political factors, its break-up was not an accidental occasion as alleged in the article. See earlier disinformation cases claiming that the war in Donbas is a consequence of USSR’s break-up and ban against Russian language, that the West destroyed the USSR and is currently targeting the Union State between Belarus and Russia, that the West destabilises Belarus to destroy Russian civilisation, an alternative route of human development, and that Nagorno-Karabakh conflict was staged by third parties to divert Russia from Belarus and Syria.

The conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh is a cover-up operation, just as the Hungarian Revolution of 1956 was

The ongoing events in Nagorno-Karabakh resemble the 1956 scheme when the West instigated an uprising in Hungary to cover-up the war against Egypt. Today, the situation in Nagorno-Karabakh was escalated to divert Russian attention from Belarus. In other words, this is a cover-up operation just as the Hungarian uprising in 1956 was.

Disproof

This is a conspiracy theory claiming that the recent escalation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict is the result of deliberate Western actions aimed at harming Russian interests in Belarus. It therefore corresponds to recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about the belligerent and hostile US and West against Russia and fits well into the disinformation narrative that presents virtually all protests, civil uprisings or local conflicts as a consequence of the West's intentional actions. The recent escalation in the Nagorno-Karabakh region is a continuation of the decades-old conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia. It is reported that nearly 100 people, including civilians, have died as of 29 September 2020. On 27 September, the EU High Representative Josep Borrell made a statement calling for an immediate cessation of hostilities, de-escalation and for strict observance of the ceasefire. As we explained in our past analysis, the image of a belligerent West which allegedly provokes protests and local conflicts in Russia's vicinity manufactures a fictional adversary that provides convenient cover for Moscow to justify its illicit activities on the grounds of “defence” and self-preservation. The Hungarian Revolution of 1956 was a spontaneous nationwide uprising against the Hungarian People's Republic and its Soviet-imposed policies. The allegations that either the Hungarian events in 1956 or the recent escalation of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict were instigated by the West to divert the USSR and Russia from other foreign policy issues are groundless. See earlier disinformation cases alleging that the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict favours US interests, someone wants to divert Russia from Belarus and Syria, that the escalation between Armenia and Azerbaijan is directed against Russia, and that the US is ready to carry out a false flag operation in Alaska to blame Russia.