Leaked letter of Dutch chief prosecutor states Tsemakh is a suspect for downing MH17

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A leaked letter dated August 30 2019 sent by Dutch MH17 chief prosecutor Fred Westerbeke to the Ukraine prosecution service states that Ukrainian citizen Vladimir Borysovich Tsemakh, who was abducted on 27 June 2019 by Ukraine SBU, is a suspect for downing of MH17. This makes him the fifth suspect. Previously he was seen as a key witness.

Westerbeke requests Ukraine to keep Tsemakh available for questioning by the criminal investigation team. Tsemakh is rumoured to be transfered to Russia as part of a prisoner swap.

Dutch member of parliament Van Dam (CDA) requested at September 2 ministers Blok and Grapperhaus (Foreign Affairs and Justice Department) to respond to the news of Tsemakh being part of a prisoner swap. Van Dam also requested the Dutch Prosecution service to respond.

While his abducting and arrest was according the Dutch Public Prosecution Service not part of the MH17 investigtion, he is now considered by the Dutch as a suspect.

Tsemakh was previously known to have been the commander of an air defense unit in Snizhne, the town nearest to the Buk missile launch site.In a video he seems to confess he had a role in hiding the Buk missile launcher after the shoot-down of MH17

Westerbeke is his letter makes a remarkable statement:

At this moment, the National Public Prosecutor’s Office is not in the position to share the content of the above-mentioned information with other members of the Joint Investigation Team

This could mean the Dutch prosecution service does not trust the other members of the Joint Investigation Team. Earlier the Dutch and Australian government decided to hold Russia liable for the downing. Malaysia was only informed about this at the latest minute to prevent leaking this step to Russia.

Ukraine website The Babel published the leaked letter on its website.  Dutch newspaper NRC has been able to establish its authenticity.

Vladimir Tsemakh became news after a planned swap of prisoners between Ukraine and Russia did not take place. According severall sources Russian president Putin demanded that Vladimir Tsemakh must be part of the prisoner swap. Which is remarkable as Vladimir Tsemakh  is an Ukraine citizen. If this demand is true it is another indication of Russia being involved in the downing of MH17.

 

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