Disinfo: Ukrainian Secret Services defector reveals the truth behind MH17: it was the Ukrainians


Vasily Prozorov, a former officer of Ukraine’s State Security Services, the SBU, revealed at a press-conference in Moscow that Ukraine is behind the MH17 tragedy.


No evidence given. Recurring pro-Kremlin narrative on Ukraine's aggressive and provocative behaviour. See examples of disinformation cases on MH17 here. Background Many competing and contradictory stories promulgated by Russian state-controlled media on MH17. The Dutch-led Joint Investigation Team has concluded that flight MH17 was shot down on 17 July 2014 by a missile of the 9M38 series, launched by a BUK-TELAR, from farmland in the vicinity of Pervomaiskiy (or: Pervomaiskyi). At that time, the area was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. The BUK-TELAR was brought in from the territory of the Russian Federation and subsequently, after having shot down flight MH-17, was taken back to the Russian Federation. 24 May 2018, JIT stated that the BUK-TELAR that was used to down MH17 originates from the 53rd Anti Aircraft Missile brigade, a unit of the Russian army from Kursk in the Russian Federation.  


  • Reported in: Issue 142
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 25/03/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian, English
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Eastern Ukraine, Conspiracy theory, 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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NATO is preparing an invasion of Russia

NATO is sending troops to the Russian borders, said Deputy Security Council Secretary of Russian Federation Mikhail Popov. He said that the size of the contingent of the alliance of rapid reaction in two years has increased from 25 to 40 thousand people.  


No evidence provided. This disinformation message is consistent with recurring pro-Kremlin narratives about the belligerent West attempting to encircle and weaken Russia. According to the official website, "the Alliance has deployed four battle-groups to Poland and the Baltic States and additional multinational brigades to Romania. NATO’s Readiness Action Plan bolsters the number of forces deployable in an emergency to over 40,000 and establishes a spearhead Very High Readiness Joint Task Force which is positioned to deploy a 5,000-man brigade anywhere in the Alliance in 2 to 7 days". NATO is not a threat to Russia. NATO's official policy towards Russia was most recently articulated by the heads of state and government of the Alliance at the Warsaw Summit in July 2016. They stated that "the Alliance does not seek confrontation and poses no threat to Russia. But we cannot and will not compromise on the principles on which our Alliance and security in Europe and North America rest". NATO is not encircling Russia. Russia's land border is just over 20,000 kilometres long. Of that, less than one-sixteenth (1,215 kilometres), is shared with NATO members. Russia has land borders with 14 countries. Only five of them are NATO members.

The DniproHES dam will wash Ukraine into the Black Sea in 2020

In August 2016, a delegation of US engineering troops (USACE) visited Ukraine with the aim of examining the state of the DniproHES dam.The American military experts noted urgent needs for maintenance. Without measures securing the construction, the dam would burst and wash Ukraine into the Black sea by 2020. President Poroshenko was informed by the disastrous state of the DniproHES dam, but has not taken any serious measures to reinforce the DniproHES.


A recurrent pro-Kremlin narrative about Ukraine as a state on the verge of a collapse. The expert team from the USACE recommends the reconstruction of the DniproHES and the expansion of the Dnipro Waterway.The report describes issues that need to be addressed and suggests measures to take. In 2018, a large-scale reconstruction of the DniproHES started. The project includes the complete restoration of three hydroelectric units of the turnkey station by specialists of the Austrian company ANDRITZ HYDRO. After the installation of the new equipment on the facility, the working capacity of the station will increase. In addition, a number of modern "green" solutions will be introduced during the reconstruction of DniproHES.

Ukraine is becoming an unsolvable problem for US and EU

On January 6, US senators said in their meeting with representatives of Ukrainian social organisations that Ukraine was becoming an unsolvable problem for the United States and the European Union. In particular, they claimed that President Poroshenko persecuted his political opponents and that the courts were controlled by politicians and oligarchs and were therefore not independent.


The primary source of information about US senators' meeting with Ukraine's civil society representatives is the article "The Only Way Out For Ukraine Is National Reconciliation Not Political Persecution", marked as "sponsored content" on the website "International Policy Digest" (not registered as media), from January 4, 2019. Russian State agency RIA Novosti resumed the piece on January 6, 2019. RIA Novosti provides hyperlink to "International policy Digest" in its publication. RIA Novosti says: "In particular, the senators said that Ukraine had become an unsolvable problem for the United States and the European Union". But there is no such quotation in the original reporting by "International Policy Digest". "International Policy Digest", referring to "our source who wishes not to be named", announces: "Today, Ukraine is an ally of both the U.S. and the EU, but it is also a failed state at war with Russia and with itself.[...] The courts, which are controlled by these politicians and oligarchs, and, are not truly independent, often render verdicts that advance the agenda that is motivated by efforts to eliminate political opponents rather than advance interests of justice or welfare of the Ukrainian people. The current trial of the former president, Victor Yanukovych, is an example of such extra-legal execution. [...] According to open source and our contacts in the Republican Party, the Trump administration is concerned about growing political persecutions in Ukraine in light of upcoming presidential elections there. [...] Getting Yanukovych involved can be an effective option in reaching a peaceful settlement salvaging Ukraine’s national identity." No official statements on Ukraine as "unsolvable problem", "failed state" or about political prosecution of Victor Yanukovich were formulated by any US senators. Background: The European Union supports Ukraine in ensuring a stable, prosperous and democratic future for all its citizens. The EU is unwavering in its support for the country's territorial integrity and sovereignty and sees the full implementation of the Minsk agreements as the basis for a sustainable, political solution to the conflict in the east of the country. Since spring 2014, the EU has stepped up its support for economic and political reforms in Ukraine.