Global Rights of pecaeful People press conference The Hague
Date 7th of October 2019
1 About the organisation GRPP and their press conference.
2 About Max van der Werff and Yana Yerlashova
3 GRPP an OSCE organisation?
4 History of GRPP (Netherlands)
5 People working/active for GRPP in the Netherlands
6 The campaign of the political SP
7 Affiliated organisations
Robert van der Noordaa and several other researchers have been collecting data on Russian and pro-Russian organisations in the Netherlands (and abroad) which have been spreading disinformation. Some of the data related to the organisation called ‘Global rights of peaceful people’ has been used to compile this report. During the 2016 referendum in the Netherlands (Ukraine/EU association agreement a study was done for Anne Applebaum and Peter Pomerantsev on Russian influence and propaganda in the Netherlands related to the association agreement. The study was partially published on both Integrity Initiative and Stopfake.org. The GRPP played a role in influencing Dutch public. Part of the data included in this document was not published before. Link: https://stopfake.org/en/kremlin-disinformation-and-the-dutch-referendum/
1 About the organisation GRPP and their press conference.
On Friday 4th of October an e-mail was sent out by an organization called Global Rights of peaceful people. The organisation invites people for a press conference "THE MH-17 TRAGEDY – WE WAIT FOR THOROUGH INVESTIGATION".
See file Invitation MH17_eng.pdf for a copy of the invitation.
Elena Plonikova is behind the e-mailaccount of the organisation. She is a well known supporter of Kremlin and has spread massive amounts of propaganda concerning Kremlin and MH17 on social media (Twitter and Facebook).
The press conference is about a documentary made by Yana Yerlashova (Russian, former Russia Today correspondent) and Max van der Werff (Dutch truther on MH17). The documentary shows a collection of vague ‘facts’ which should show that the official investigation of the OVV/JIT is a false flag. Their main message is that Russia is not and could not be responsible for the downing of flight MH17.
A Facebook event was created but for some reason was taken down again (see pdf of the page), Facebookevent: https://facebook.com/events/391423274859204/
GRPP an OSCE organisation?
What stands out on the invitation (PDF) is that the organisation uses the OSCE ODIHR logo and poses as an OSCE organisation or affiliated organisation.
The organisation’s logo (with peace dove) and name suggests a sort of humnaitarian organisation:
When searching on the OSCE website only very limited information was found. Nevertheless there is some info on the OSCE website:
On Facebook a GRPP page was opened on the 5th of September 2019. https://facebook.com/groppintpl
Again the organisation poses as an OSCE or OSCE affiliated organisation, see banner:
There are only a few posts by this organisation, the page has 57 likes only. This page seems to be of the Polish organisation of GRPP since below the name of the organisation @GROPPINTPL is indicated.
About Max van der Werff and Yana Yerlashova
Max van der Werff is a Dutch truther who after the MH17 disaster spent a lot of time finding ‘evidence’ that Russia is not behind the downing of the plane. Max is a master in plausible deniability schemes, he ignores whatever evidence is known and makes up various scenario’s to prove that the Kremlin and or DNR are innocent. Yana Yerlashova is a Russian RT journalist who supposedly left to make a documentary on MH17 called MH17 a call for justice. Yana and Max started a crowdfund which should fund 20k in approximately 2 weeks. This seemed an impossible crowdfund but unknown actors donated several very large sums and they miraculously managed to crowdfund 21k.
Research on Max and Yana unearthed some interesting facts. E-mails from the former Donetsk News Agency (Doni) showed how Max offers his services to ‘destroy’ the official investigation and his allegiance to DNR/Kremlin. Yana Yerlashova turned out to be rersponsible for planting parts of the MH17 wreckage in order to show that the official investigation was not done properly. See article for de Groene Amsterdammer by Robert van der Noordaa and Coen van de Ven. Article is in Dutch, google translate works fine though.
More info on Yana and Max and their documentary: https://facebook.com/groups/MH17.FiveYearsOn/
History of GRPP (Netherlands)
The Chamber of Commerce (Netherlands) was checked, the organisation is registered. It was registered on the 18th of April 2019 (no prior registrations). The date when the organisation was founded is 30-11-2018 according to the extract. There are no deposits, whether this organisation has money is unknown. What we do know is that they did manage to book the event at Nieuwpoort The Hague. Nieuwspoort is a well know organisation that has facilities for holding press conferences, seminars etc. Costs for such a seminar s approximately? Note: ask Nieuwspoort for the costs of hosting such an event.
The organisation was known in the Netherlands prior to the date of Foundation. Sonja van den Ende writes a readers column in the Dutch Metro (15th of May 2015). The article is about the Odessa disaster where 48 people died in a fire. She claims fascists burned the building down. Interestingly enough she mentions that she was invited to go to Odessa (seems fully paid by) GRPP, the article doesn’t say which GRPP. It is likely the Kiev branche that invited her.
In the Belgian paper dewererldmorgen.be Sonya wrote a similar article also stating that she was invited to Odessa by GRPP.
Nikita Ananjev knows Sonya and helps her spread her propaganda. He mentions that she was in Russia, this trip is likely also financed by GRPP.
There were more ‘appearances’ by the GRPP. Prior to the referendum one of Dutch mainstream newspapers Volkskrant wrote about Sergey Markhel. Markhel who posed as Ukrainian came to the Netherlands where he attended 23 events related to the EU/Ukraine Association agreement. Markhel used a business card of The GRPP organisation at that time.
At one of the events Marhel stated that he would go to every event related to the referendum/EU-Ukraine association agreement to tell people about the Nazi’s there (referrring to Ukraine) and how everyone in Ukraine does not support the association agreement.
GRPP an international Organisation
The German GRPP seems to play a key role in the international events of GRPP. The main person behind this organisation is Oleg Muzyca.
From KHPG: Muzyka is well-known to the Group members both as one of the active anti-Maidan participants in the disturbances on May 2, 2014 and as one of the chief propagandists of the ‘Odesa massacre’ lies. He was taken from the roof of the Trade Union building after the fire and arrested. While clearly any charges against him would need to be proven, it is worth noting that anti-Maidan activists positioned on the roof were shooting and hurling Molotov cocktails at pro-Ukrainian activists, including those who were desperately trying to rescue people caught by the fire. He was released after anti-Maidan activists stormed the police station where he was held on May 4. He fled to Germany and has been there since, except when he goes travelling around Europe with an extremely well-funded ‘exhibition’ pushing the ‘massacre’ lies.
Muzyka is connected to the German far right, in a picture in the KHPG article he can be seen beside Rüdiger Klasen who served a prison sentence for setting fire to a hostel for asylum seekers.
The Facebook page of the press conference in The Hague shows Muzyka as organiser. Muzyka is also prominently on the banner picture of Facebook page of GRPP (Poland), Muzyka is on the far left.
According to the article on antifashist the GRPP exists/is active in 16 countries (not checked). On their youtube channel various movies can be found about for instance their event in Kiev. No detailed investigation has been done in exactly how many countries GRPP is active, whether they are officially registered and what events they organise. Though the organisation was likely created just after Maidan it seems to become more active especially in the last year. Strangely enough there do not seem to be official websites in the countries where they are active. On social media info about the organisation is limited. How the organisation is financed is unknown, possibly the Russian embassy helps with financing.
Youtube channel of GRPP: https://youtube.com/channel/UCtIOHlj7VVf7fJtsnePjjiw
The screenshot above was taken from a video of GRPP on Youtube. The logo of OSCE is not used in the presentation but interestingly enough by using the logo of Russia (bottom left) it seems to be frank about being a Russian organisation. The speaker is talking in Russian, so the audience is likely to consist of Russians/Russian speaking people. https://youtu.be/C1krAfxpa_8
Example event in Kiev https://youtu.be/IjZlhG1oyDs
Using google, youtube and Facebook events and activities were found in countries such as the UK, Greece, Ukraine, Spain, Poland, Netherlands.
People working/active for GRPP in the Netherlands
Nikita Anajev is a well know for his Russian and Kremlin propaganda on social media. His efforts to campaign against the EU/Ukrainian association agreement caught so much attention that the New York Times interviewed him:
From the article:
A particularly active member of the Ukrainian team was Nikita Ananjev, a 26-year-old student born in Moscow who moved with his mother to the Netherlands, where he is now chairman of the Russian Student Association.
He said he had attended 15 or more public meetings across the Netherlands during the referendum campaign, speaking out against the Ukrainian pact and what he described as the European Union’s “rusty and corrupted nomenklatura” and its unfairly negative views of Russia.
Mr. Ananjev, now a university student in the eastern Dutch region of Twente, went to Moscow in 2013 for a “youth leaders school,” a program sponsored by Rossotrudnichestvo, a state-funded organization that promotes cultural exchanges and works to promote Moscow’s take on the world. In December, he visited Brussels for the European Russian Forum, an annual gathering of Moscow-friendly politicians and experts supported by the Russian Foreign Ministry.
Complaining that Russians who defend their country and criticize its adversaries often get labeled unfairly as intelligence operatives, he said in an interview: “I am not a spy. Not yet.”
Interestingly enough Vladimir Kornilov, the founder of DNR also actively campaigned in the Netherlands. He helped Thierry Baudet who is currently the leader of the Far Right Part Forum voor Democratie campaign against the association agreement. Kornilov is also a friend of Elena Plotnikova who owns the e-mailaddress that sent out the invitation to the press conference on 23rd of October 2019.
From the New York Times:
In the article One such contact is Vladimir Kornilov, a Russian-born historian and political analyst who grew up in eastern Ukraine and now lives in The Hague, where he runs a one-man research outfit called the Center for Eurasian Studies. Emails stolen by a pro-Ukrainian hacking group show how Mr. Kornilov offered information and advice to politicians and others in Moscow during his previous work at a Russian-funded research institute in Kiev.
Before the Dutch referendum last year, Mr. Kornilov campaigned against the Ukraine trade deal, describing himself benignly as “a Ukrainian expat in The Hague” who was “stunned by the seemingly endless stream of lies and propaganda” about Russia and felt obliged to respond.
“After the referendum here, everybody thought this was just a Dutch problem, but now we see it was just the beginning,” Mr. Kornilov said in an interview, denying any financial or other links to the Russian state. “There is a huge crisis in the European Union.”
Though not mentioned by name in this article it seems that Nikita Ananjev accompanied Markhel during the many events he attended. The picture in the article shows Ananjev and Markhel:
Note: with paint the names of 3 of the people in the picture were added. Far left is Nikita Ananjev, in the middle is Markhel, far right is a pro-Russian Dutch guy who used to live on Crimea called Ruben Dolstra.
A local media sites reports on the fact that a Russian who was accused of Putin-propaganda is a student at the Dutch university in Twente.
The extract of the chamber of commerce lists Tatiana as one of the three people registered for GRPP. There is no data on her, the only thing known about her is that the Russian Student organisation is registered at her address.
The extract of the chamber of commerce lists Natalia as one of the three people registered for GRPP. Natalia is a very active
About Sergey Markhel
Sergey Markhel lives in Odessa according to his Facebook profile. Whether he really lives in Odessa is unknown. According to his Facebook profile he studied in Odessa. He has a Russian nationality and was born in Omsk, Russia. Markhel is extremely pro-Russian. He travels through Europe and allegedly works for Russian embassies in those countries. There are articles about him being in many different countries like Austria, Spain and the Netherlands. http://e-news.su/news/28699-ukrainskie-nacisty-pytalis-v-madride-sorvat-vystavku-o-genocide-na-vostoke-ukrainy-za-chto-byli-s-pozorom-izgnany.html
Markhel is against the association agreement and spent months in the Netherlands campaigning against the referendum. An article in the Dutch newspaper Volkskrant published an article with some information about him. Markhel told the author of the article that during the referendum he toured the Netherlands for weeks and attended debates in 23 cities. When he was asked whether he is a journalist his translator (who claims to be a Krim-Tatar) answers that he is a politician.
In Ukraine Unian noticed that Markhel is trying to influence the referendum. Unian writes that Kremlin propagandist Markhel was spotted in the Netherlands.
The Ukrainian newspaper Europeiski Pravda published an article on the first of April 2016 about Markhel working for GeenStijl. This however does not seem to be the case. Markhel seems to travel to debates throughout the country where he sit in the audience. He will try and influence these debates by asking questions and then telling people how bad the agreement is. He claims that he is from Ukraine and that people should vote against the agreement.
In another article Europeiski Pravda writes that Baudet was not so pro-Putin in the past, the article mentions a visit of Markhel at an referendum debate in Rotterdam.
A review was written on the debate held in the city of Delft on the 4th of April. The review mentions that Doctor Markhel was so emotional that he part of his speech was in Russian. Markhel uses the tradegy in Odessa where protestors lost their lives in a fire as a reason to vote no. Markhel claims he was a witness of the Odessa tragedy. What is very strange that there is no post on his facebook profile that confirms that he was there, why would someone who is relatively active on Facebook not post about this? The Ukrainian government planned to have these people killed he claims. http://oorlogisgeenoplossing.blogspot.nl/2016/04/de-betekenis-van-het-nee.html
As far as could be determined Markhel does not live in Odessa. According to Ukrainian intelligence he seems to live in in Spain. It is likely that he wants people to think he lives in Odessa. This way he can pose like a critical Ukrainian citizen. He claims that he witnessed the tragedy in Odessa in which pro-Russian demonstrators died in a fire. It is likely he was never really there, he just uses the tragedy to his advantage. If Markhel would really live in Ukraine he would probably have been arrested. There is no evidence that he is paid but his campaigning and trips throughout Europe are very costly, it is very unlikely that he uses his own funds. It is possible that instead of being paid by authorities in Russia that he is being paid by Russian Embassies from the countries where he is located at that moment.
What caught attention is that a group of Pro-Russian Ukrainians and Russians helped the anti-campaign of the political party SP. These people were present during debates and gatherings. They actively and in a very organized way helped to disrupt the outcome of the referendum. Since the knowledge of a lot of Dutch people about Ukraine is minimal the fact the opinions of Ukrainians and Russians seem quite convincing to the audience. It is unknown why the SP chose to let this group help in their campaign. Some of the Pro-Russian people in the picture were paid, Harry van Bommel confirmed this during an event in the city of Arnhem. There is no information how much was paid and to whom. Even after some Ukrainians complained to the SP and even to Harry van Bommel personally he saw no objections to working with this group. Out of the group one person stands out, his name is Sergey Markhel. Markhel has shown up in many different countries in Europe and participated in protests and rallies. There is no evidence that he is being paid by the Kremlin, but the costs of his activities must be significant and he is likely to be financed. It is possible that the other people are being paid but there is no evidence of this.
People in the picture, from left to right:
1. Elena Plotnikova https://facebook.com/elena.plotnikova.kossakowski
Elena Plotnikova is from Donetsk Ukraine. On social media it is clear from her comments and posts that she is very pro-Russian and has actively been posting on social media during the campaign. Several people claimed she used to live near former president Yanukovich and had business relations with him when she was still in Donetsk, that was before Yanukovich was president.
2. Sergey Markhel https://facebook.com/sergej.markhel
Markhel seems to be a financed Russian campaigning throughout Europe. See more detailed description further on in this chapter.
3. Natalia Vorontsova https://facebook.com/natalia.vorontsova
According to her Facebook profile she is from Tchernivtsi, Ukraine. Very pro-Russian and very active at various events in the past 5 years.
4. Dina Badmayeva-Belinski https://facebook.com/dina.badmayevabelinski
On her Facebook page it says she is from Talinn, Estonia.
5. Younis Lutfala Goran https://facebook.com/younislutfula.goran
Younis is active for the Political party SP.
6. Harry van Bommel https://facebook.com/harry.vanbommel.35
At that time the frontman of the political party SP.
7. Anastasia Danilchenko https://facebook.com/anadanilchenko -
originally from Dnipropetrovsk
8. Veronica Postore https://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100010682105623
9. Nikita Ananjev https://facebook.com/nikita.s.ananjev
Though his Facebook profile does not include where he was born some posts seem to suggest that he is originally from Tatarstan, Russia.
Numbers 5 and 6 are members of the political party SP. Harry van Bommel
6 Affiliated organisations
Russian Student Organisation
The extra of the chamber of commerce registration lists a Tatiana Chernega. The address where she is registered is also the registration address of the Russian Student organisation. The website is not online, registration was not continued. Former address:
The link here is that events with very pro-Russian speakers were also organised in the Netherlands by the Russian student organsiation. A sort of clone of this organisation was registered at an address in Enschede. This was the address where Nikita Ananjev used to live before he moved to Amstelveen.
Since both Ananjev and Chernega (registered owners/representatives of GRPP in the Dutch Chamber of Commerce) have a registered Russian Student organisation it is likely that this organisation is also a tool in spreading disinfo. More research on the Russian Student organisation is needed to understand the activities.
Rossotrudnichvesto is a Russian organisation affiliated to the Russian Embassy. It is active in many countries. The GRPP organisation’s logo is very similar to the Rossotrudnichvesto logo. Both logo’s have a globe and a peace dove in it. Rosstrudnichvesto is known for organizing events, actively spreading disinformation and propaganda.
In 2015 Rossotrudnichvesto seemed to have stopped with their activities. But the organisation is currently very active in the Netherlands. More research is needed to on the events they organise.
Nikita Ananjev has very good ties with Zurab Agirbov who is the head of the Dutch branch of Russotrudnichvesto. Ananjev visited the events of the organisation.
No detailed study was done on but the organisation poses as mainly culturally in nature. At Leiden university there are still ads for scholarships for students. Leiden university is famous for their studies on Russian history and culture. https://bestuurskunde.weblog.leidenuniv.nl/2016/03/18/rossotrudnichestvo-beurzen-beschikbaar-in-het-kader-van-het-culturele-verdrag-met-rusland/
In some countries the organisation organises free trips to Russia for journalists. The goal behind the trip is to influence journalists in their work.
Notable is that the Rossotrudnichvesto organisation was even mentioned in Comey’s intelligence report/Statement to the senate on Russian interference:
Rossotrudnichvesto and Dutch Youth
Zurab Agirbov from Rossotrudnichvesto organised a trip to Moscow for young Dutch people.
Bellingcat also wrote about this rather peculiar event:
One of the most interesting things Agirbov took part in was in July 2014, when he was an organizer of a delegation of Dutch young people to Moscow. The conference was titled “Generation Next” and included presentations from representatives of the Young Guard of United Russia and representatives from Rosmolodezh and Rossotrudnitchestvo.
Discussion included “media coverage of political events…[and its] influence…in public opinion, particularly on youth” as well as ways to “decrease these manipulations and have more objective information”. One of the main topics was also the war in Ukraine, and an area of focus were “several project ideas discussed on the development of further contact and cooperation between Russian and Dutch Youth” as well the resolving problems of “disinformation” caused by “official media” and how “to fix the lack of information and build co-operation”.
The Coordination Council of Russian Compatriots in the Netherlands
A scheduled conference of the Coordination Council of Russian compatriots was held on the 11th of May 2019 in the Hague. Mr Makarenko from Tass was present at this event. Interesting fact from the article is that Makarenko calls people from the organisation activists ‘“Our organization needs a new working style”, said Mr. Makarenko. “In the past our activists reported on their own work results.”
The event revolved around a new organisation which was founded “The freshly elected Bureau consists of 7 members. The Conference has also resolved to return to the old official name “The Coordination Council of Russian Compatriots in the Netherlands” and to offer the new version of the Statutes for public discussion.
Nikita Ananjev is possible a member of Russian compatriots organisation, his name is not mentioned in the article but he can be seen in the picture (second to the left). The six people in the picture are likely 6 of the mentioned members.
Russian expertise Center
The same group of people who helped the SP with their campaign protested on the 14th of March 2014 in The Hague. In the list of participants we can find Elena Plotnikova, Anneke de Laaf, Natalia Vorontsova and Nikita Ananjev. What was unusual about this demonstration is that the protection of Duth police was massive. No one was allowed near the demonstration. Posts on the Facebook event page already stated that they wanted protection and guards. For a group of 15 people doing a peaceful protest the police protection is unusual. The main organiser of the protest is Erik Havenaar Director of the Expertise Center of the Russian Federation. The expertise center of the Russian Federation works closely with the Russian Embassy and an organisation called Rossotrudnichestvo. https://facebook.com/rossotr.netherlands/
Havenaar is extremely pro-Russian and considers himself Russian.
Russian tv crews were present during this protest and many Russian newspapers including RT and TV Zvezda.
Why would so many Russian newspapers write about a small demonstration with 15 people. This protest was orchestrated as a showcase in Russia. Probably the idea is to show that in Holland some people also have the opinion that Krim is Russian territory and that Russian actions in Ukraine are a good solution to the ‘local’ problems.
On the 19th of April 2014, shortly after the demonstration Dutch news reported that the Expertise Center of the Russian Federation (Erik Havenaar) would start a new organisation. The new group is called Free Inform. The groups implies to show objective information concerning Russia and Ukraine.
No info about Free Inform can be found after those articles. But the group of people remains very active like during the Dutch referendum.
An interesting tie in between Rossotrudnichvesto and Havenaar was found:
The group of young people who took part in the Generation Next trip to Russia were also invited to a follow-up meeting at the Russian Embassy in the Hague in October 2014 – The meeting was organized by Erik Havenaar, the head of the Expertise Centre of the Russian Federation.
The Facebook page of the Russian expertise center was deleted, probably because Havenaar moved to Czech Republic he ceased the activities of the Expertise Center and deleted the page on Facebook.
Example post of The Expertise Center of the Russian Federation can be found on https://archive.li/D0BNs
Political party Einheit (Germany)
A connection was noticed with political party Einheit in Germany. This party has a lot of Russians (Russian with German nationality) working for them. The picture shows people from both the political party einheit.de and the group helping the political party SP with their anti-campaign.
From left to right: The third person from the left is Nikita Ananjev, the fourth person from the left is Anneke de Laaf The 6th person is Natalia Vorontsova.
The German political party Die Einheit is based in Baden-Baden Germany. Their motto is: for acceptance, integration and intercultural unity in Germany. Website: www.parteieinheit.de
The political party is active in 23 cities in 10 regions in Germany. Their members are mainly people of Russian origin or possibly pro-Russian people. Although most of the material on their site is what one would expect from a political party there are aspects concerning Ukraine and Russia. No specific detailed study was done on the activities of this party.
A few examples of the party’s involvement with Russia and Ukraine:
- On the site there is a section called your opinion (ihre meinung), it contains polls. The third poll shows that most people see the situation in Ukraine as manipulation of the West against Russia.
- The party members organise protests where they protest how the media blames the Kremlin like under http://parteieinheit.de/index.php/de/aktuell-de : Ein friedlicher Protest gegen die zunehmende Gewalt
Apparently the group that helped the Dutch political party SP with their campaign also assists the German/Russian party ‘Die Einheit’.
- The Global Rights of Peaceful people poses as an OSCE organisation or at least as an affiliated organisation. The use of the OSCE-logo and thereby its reputation is misleading and gives credibility to people who are know for spreading propaganda for years
- The people associated with GRPP have been involved in a number of Russian or pro-Russian organsations. These organisations were responsible for organising protests and events to spread propaganda (MH17 was not downed by/with help of Russia, the Odessa tragedy was caused by fascists who attacked honorable citizens etc). These people are well know and only interested in spreading propaganda and disinfo, influencing Dutch public at events such as this MH17 press conference.
- GRPP poses as a sort of peace organisation, the views of the people and the events they organise do not reflect this. The organisation voices Russian propaganda, peace as a topic is nowehere to be found.