Disinfo: Ukraine shot down MH17 instead of Putin's plane

Summary

In July 2014, the Ukrainian Army was planning to shoot down the plane President Vladimir Putin was travelling in, but they failed and shot down MH17 instead.

Disproof

Recurring Russian disinformation about the crash of MH17, suggesting that Ukrainian forces were responsible for shooting down the plane whilst attempting to assassinate Vladmir Putin. There is no proof that Ukraine wanted to shoot down Vladimir Putin's plane. Moreover, the results of the investigation of the Joint Investigation Team are clear: 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 with one missing missile returned to the Russian Federation. 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 public hearing on the incident started on 9 March 2020 in the Netherlands.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 203
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 24/06/2020
  • Outlet language(s) Hungarian
  • Country: Ukraine, Russia
  • Keywords: MH17
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Crimea reunited with Russia after a referendum on the peninsula

Relations between the Russian Federation and Western countries have worsened due to the situation in Ukraine and around Crimea. Crimea reunited with Russia after a referendum on the peninsula. The West, having accused the Russian Federation of interference, imposed sanctions against Russia. Moscow took retaliatory measures, headed for import substitution and more than once stated that it is counterproductive talking with Russia in sanction-language. Russia has repeatedly stated that it is not a party to the conflict in Ukraine and the subject of Minsk settlement agreements.

Disproof

This is a mix of several recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about illegal annexation of Crimea, war in Ukraine and Minsk Agreements. The so-called referendum was organised under Russian illegal occupation without complying with neither the Ukrainian electoral code nor the Russia electoral code. The annexation has been condemned by the UN GA (see the resolution A/RES/68/262 on the territorial integrity of Ukraine). No international body recognises the so-called referendum, announced on 27 February 2014 and held on 16 March 2014. A year after the illegal annexation, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted that the plan to annex Crimea was ordered weeks before the so-called referendum. The European Union does not recognise Crimea's annexation and continues to condemn it as a violation of international law. EU sanctions continue to be in place against Russia as a consequence of the annexation. For the EU's statement on the sixth anniversary of Crimea annexation see here. Regarding permanent denial of Russia’s involvement in war, Russia is pretending that has no role in this armed conflict, despite massive evidence in this regard, More, pro Kremlin propaganda claimes that Russia helps to resolve the internal conflict in Ukraine. The European Union stated in July 2014 that "arms and fighters continue flowing into Ukraine from the Russian Federation". At the NATO Summit in Wales in September 2014, NATO leaders condemned in the strongest terms Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine and demanded Russia to stop and withdraw its forces from Ukraine and from the country’s border. NATO leaders also demanded Russia comply with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities; refrain from aggressive actions against Ukraine; halt the flow of weapons, equipment, people and money across the border to the separatists; and stop fomenting tension along and across the Ukrainian border. In 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's military presence in Ukraine. The EU has condemned the clear violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity by acts of aggression by the Russian armed forces since February 2014. Read similar cases claiming that there is no evidence of Russian presence in Ukraine, that rumours about Russian military presence in Donbas come from linguistic misunderstanding, that Crimea never belonged to Ukraine, that Crimean people have expressed their desire to rejoin Russia in a democratic processthat Russia has never participated in the Ukrainian crisis.

The Munich agreement began World War II

The West is engaged in historical revisionism. The historical truth is that the start of the war was not because of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, which the Western establishment likes to mention, but because of completely different documents. Do not forget that it was the Munich conspiracy that culminated in the policy of appeasing the aggressor and opened the way to WWII.

Disproof

This is a pro-Kremlin narrative which is itself a clear case of historical revisionism about the WWII and the Munich Agreement. The Munich Agreement (September 30, 1938), indeed, permitted German annexation of the Sudetenland, in western Czechoslovakia. The policy of appeasement towards Adolf Hitler was heavily criticized in Europe and proved to be a disastrous move. World War II began in Europe on 1 September 1939, when Germany invaded Poland. Great Britain and France responded by declaring war on Germany on 3 September. Before this, from May 1939 until August 1939, the UK, France, Poland and the USSR were trying to find a compromise to create a coalition during the so-called Moscow Negotiations. Polandcategorically refused to let the Red Army into its territory, fearing Soviet occupation. The USSR started in parallel negotiations with Germany and on 23 August 1939, signed theMolotov-Ribbentrop (Stalin-Hitler) pact, in which the Soviet Union and Germany divided their "spheres of interests" in Europe: the division of Poland, the Baltic countries, Finland, and Romania were agreed. On 1 September 1939, Hitlerattacked Poland, Soviet troops entered the territory on September 17 of the same year. From 3 September 1939, Great Britain and France were at war with Germany, creating an anti-Hitler coalition together with the expelled Polish government and other countries. Read a similar case that The Munich conspiracy of European powers launched WWII.

Zelenskyy is going to take away Russian territories

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy continues to dream about getting Russian territories. With a preference for jokes on political issues, he once again raised the topic of relations with Russia. It turned out that Zelenskyy believes in a great victory over the Kremlin. In an interview with the Canadian newspaper “Globe and Mail”, the guarantor of “nezalezhnoy” [Ukraine] called the relationship with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin as confusing and complicated.

Disproof

Recurring disinformation narrative painting Ukraine as an aggressive, Russia-hating, state. In the interview with the Canadian newspaper “Globe and Mail”, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy did not say that he plans to take the territories of the Russian Federation. He wants to return Ukrainian territories that are not currently under Kyiv's control.

“This is the most tricky and difficult question. I will tell you frankly, I do not have time to believe, or not to believe, Vladimir Putin. I just have to do my job, in the way I consider correct, to achieve the result. Over this time, we have returned more than 130 people from captivity. I understand that this is not a big victory, but these are the small victories that are sure to lead to a big one. And for us it is the return of all Ukrainians and all our lands [territories of Donbas and the Crimean peninsula]. And that's what I really believe in. And I have time for that," Zelenskyy said.