Friday, December 4, 2020

Weaponized courts: The $50 bn Yukos case will be the remaining straw for Russia, ending its cooperation with Western ‘justice’

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Patrick Armstrong spent 30 years as an analyst for the Canadian authorities, specializing in first the united states after which Russia. He was a Political Counselor within the Canadian Embassy in Moscow from 1993 to 1996. Given the torrent of anti-Russian sentiment within the West, it’s unlikely Moscow would get a good listening to in authorized proceedings overseen by Western courts. And latest hints recommend three many years of engagement could also be coming to an finish. A Dutch court docket has simply reversed one other earlier Dutch court docket ruling that reversed a good earlier Dutch court docket ruling. Russia had been sued by an organization representing the shareholders of erstwhile oil large Yukos. The newest iteration, reversing the reversal and taking us again to the unique judgment, calls for that Russia pay $50 billion to its shareholders. Yukos was nationalized within the early 2000s, on the grounds of failure to pay tax arrears after the arrest of its CEO for tax evasion.So, what ought to Moscow do? It has appealed, however maybe it ought to take into consideration whether or not it nonetheless needs to play the sport.Let’s have a look at the conduct of different Dutch courts. In 2001, Slobodan Milošević appeared on the Hague charged with crimes towards humanity, genocide – the complete bundle. And, fairly rightly, mentioned most Westerners, as a result of had not their media already named him the “butcher of the Balkans”? Also on Yukos case: Netherlands prepares for listening to in $50 billion plus authorized battle over disgraced ex-oligarch’s former oil empire In 2016, the International Court of Justice dominated that perhaps he hadn’t been as responsible as first assumed. But it was too late: Milošević had died in his jail cell 10 years earlier than, with the trial nonetheless rolling on.The Netherlands can be in control of the investigation into the destruction of the MH-17 flight over Ukraine in 2014. Again, we had rapid Western information assertions that Putin and Russia have been accountable, and the non-public assurance of former Secretary of State John Kerry that US intelligence sources had watched the entire thing unfold. And it’s been a fact-free Gish gallop ever since.After a number of investigations, suspiciously depending on Ukrainian intelligence sources, social media, and the US-government funded company Bellingcat, with nobody asking the place the “we saw it” was, the trial of 4 people started in March 2020 and has been continuing on the similar snug tempo because the Milošević trial.In 2018, Ukraine, with out the least suspicion of a sequence of proof, produced some elements it claimed have been from the surface-to-air missile mentioned to have shot the airplane down. The elements had numbers, numbers will be traced, and the missile manufacturing facility traced them. They have been elements of a missile shipped to an anti-aircraft unit within the west of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic in December 1986. Also on Investigation launched into claims that staff of ex-oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s media group took half in 2014 gang rape The judges determined that the paperwork have been irrelevant as a result of they “may say something about where the missile was between [19]86 and 91, but they say nothing about where the missile was in July 2014.” Presumably, a daring raid from Donetsk to an ammo dump in Western Ukraine had occurred, which no one seen. So, one may ask what Russia can count on from any trial held within the Netherlands besides an interminable course of till the defendant dies.Russians may then flip their consideration to the follow of the rule of regulation in different Western international locations as we speak. Huawei’s chief monetary officer, Meng Wanzhou, is approaching her third 12 months of home arrest in Canada. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been in a British jail with probably the most extreme regimes for the previous 18 months and is approaching the second 12 months of his extradition listening to. Maria Butina, convicted in 2018 of performing as an unregistered international agent of Russia, was in a US jail for 5 months, usually in solitary confinement, on very questionable expenses. Senior French government Frédéric Pierucci arrested in 2013 and later imprisoned in a US maximum-security facility for unwittingly breaching American bribery legal guidelines. Or the US’s open-ended Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act – a federal regulation that, in 2017, imposed sanctions on Iran, North Korea, and Russia. Or the massive positive imposed on Russia’s Gazprom vitality company in a Polish court docket simply final month over the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Or they may think about that Venezuela saved its nationwide gold reserves in London for safekeeping however can’t have it again (though that judgment has lately been reversed – for now). Or that the European Union prolonged its sanctions on Russia as a result of it couldn’t show its innocence of the most recent accusation over Ukraine. Russian observers could be forgiven in the event that they regarded this as not rule of regulation however battle of regulation – lawfare. Also on Netherlands to take Russia to European Court of Human Rights over ‘role’ in MH17 crash Moscow has typically performed the sport and accepted Western court docket rulings and, typically, they’ve gone its method: for instance, the European Court of Human Rights’ ruling of 2011 that the case towards Yukos founder Mikhail Khodorkovsky had not been politically motivated. But, given the relentless cascade of accusations – redoubled previously 5 years – maybe Moscow ought to rethink, on the grounds that Western ‘justice’ won’t ever give it a good shake.Will it achieve this? Well, there have been some hints. At a convention of the Valdai Discussion Club suppose tank final month, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov mentioned Russia now not seemed to Western Europe for instance and was not going to be its vassal. The structure was lately amended to make Russian regulation major. These would seem like clues that Moscow is a minimum of pondering the conclusion that Western courts are not an arbiter, however a weapon.Like this story? Share it with a good friend!The statements, views and opinions expressed on this column are solely these of the writer and don’t essentially characterize these of RT.

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