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OSCE Ministerial Council. Photo: OSCE

German expert report: No evidence of Russian troops in Donbass

According to a report by a research unit of the German Bundestag, the contention of the European Union, NATO and the US, that since the Ukraine civil war began in early 2014, Russia has been involved, is highly questionable.

Published: January 18, 2020, 9:09 am

    Berlin

    There has been no reliable evidence of Russian troop invasion or intervention by regular Russian military forces in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine, the report has found – just released in Berlin. The full German report can be read on the official website.

    The German report is entitled “Intervention in civil war zones: The role of Russia during the east Ukraine conflict”. It was researched by the foreign, international law and defence department (WD-2) of the Scientific Services Bureau of the Bundestag.

    The experts tasked with the report, described the mainstream narrative with the German phrase, ohne belastbares Faktenmaterial  meaning that such a notion is “without reliable fact material” after the researchers reviewed all the necessary media and official public releases and reports, as well as European court rulings.

    The conclusion of the Bundestag report, which is 17 pages long and was completed on December 9, has not been reported in the international media. To date, it has been ignored by the Anglo-American press, including the alternative media, noted blogger John Helmer.

    In a preface to the report, the authors say they “support the members of the German Bundestag with mandate-related activity. Their works do not express the view of the German Bundestag, its individual organs, or the management of the Bundestag”. Responsibility for the research reporting is “the technical responsibility of the authors…as well as the department management.” No authors were identified by name.

    “For five years Ukrainian armed forces and pro-Russian separatists have been fighting against each other in the Donbass/Donets Basin,” the report says. “The territorial conflict shows classical identifiers of a non-international (internal) armed conflict. About the extent, quality and magnitude of the military involvement of Russia during the Ukraine conflict, there are few reliable facts and analyses aside from the numerous speculations, part-contradictory reports and press announcements, and denials from different sources. Altogether, however, the picture of the situation is not unequivocal.

    “Also, the Federal [German] Government holds no reliable knowledge, according to its own information apparently, on how much influence today Russia actually exercises on the separatists in the East Ukraine that can be described as credible.”

    The report summarizes western media reports, social media posts, as well as NATO press releases while casting doubt on their veracity: “Reliable information about the parts of the region of the Ukrainian-Russian border not controlled by Kiev is rare,”  it highlighted.

    The German researchers also questioned claims published by the monitoring mission of the area from the Organization for Security and Economic Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) which “has, in spite of its comprehensive mandate, only limited access to this area”.

    The report concluded: “The question of whether pro-Russian separatists in the Donbass region are currently under control and directed from Moscow, or whether regular Russian troops still remain on Ukrainian territory cannot be answered without reliable factual material, in particular without the appropriate and reliable secret service intelligence.”

    Helmer has already commented  extensively on the anti-Russian leadership of the OSCE’s special monitoring mission (SMM) in Ukraine.

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