Assad´s E-mails Reveal Iranian Ties (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Elad Benari 03/15/12)
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Syrian President Bashar Assad took advice from Iran on how to handle
the uprising against his rule, according to a cache of what appear to
be several thousand e-mails received and sent by the Syrian leader
and his wife.
The e-mails, which were published by the British Guardian on
Wednesday, also prove the Syrian leader was briefed in detail about
the presence of western journalists in the Baba Amr district of Homs
and urged to “tighten the security grip” on the opposition-held city.
The revelations are contained in more than 3,000 documents that
activists say are e-mails downloaded from private accounts belonging
to Assad and his wife Asma and were obtained by the Guardian.
According to the report, the emails were intercepted by members of
the opposition Supreme Council of the Revolution group between June
and early February.
The emails show that Mrs. Assad spent more than £10,000 on
candlesticks, tables and chandeliers from Paris and instructed an
aide to order a fondue set from Amazon.
The Guardian said it has made extensive efforts to authenticate the
emails, by checking their contents against established facts and
contacting ten individuals whose correspondence appears in the cache.
These checks suggest the messages are genuine, but it has not been
possible to verify every one.
The emails show how Assad assembled a team of aides to advise him on
media strategy and how to position himself in the face of increasing
international criticism of his regime´s attempts to crush the
uprising, the Guardian said.
They also appear to show that Assad received advice from Iran or its
proxies on several occasions during the crisis.
One example was before a speech in December, when Assad’s media
consultant prepared a long list of themes, reporting that the advice
was based on “consultations with a good number of people in addition
to the media and political adviser for the Iranian ambassador.”
The memo advised Assad to use “powerful and violent” language and to
show appreciation for support from “friendly states,” the Guardian
reported. It also advised that the regime should “leak more
information related to our military capability” to convince the
public that it could withstand a military challenge.
Among those who communicated with the president´s account were Khaled
al-Ahmed who, it is believed, was given the task of advising about
Homs and Idlib. In November, according to the report, Ahmed wrote to
Assad urging him to “tighten the security grip to start [the]
operation to restore state control in Idlib and Hama countryside.”
He also advised Assad that he had been told European reporters
had “entered the area by crossing the Lebanese borders illegally.” In
another message he warned the president that “a tested source who met
with leaders of groups in Baba Amr today said a big shipment of
weapons coming from Libya will arrive to the shores of one of the
neighboring states within three days to be smuggled to Syria.”
Earlier on Wednesday, the United Nations said that more than 230,000
Syrians have fled their homes during the bloody year-long crackdown
on the uprising.
The UN High Commissioner for Refugees´ coordinator for Syria said
30,000 people have already fled to Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, adding
that the Syrian Arab Red Crescent reported that at least 200,000 of
the people who have fled their homes are within the country itself.
Earlier this week, Syrian troops committed another massacre in Idlib,
murdering 55 people. The massacre came one day after the Syrian
regime killed at least 47 women and children in a massacre in the
Karm al-Zeitoun neighborhood in Homs.
The problems in his own country did not stop Assad from condemning
Israeli air raids on Gaza on Tuesday.
The Syrian Foreign Minister said in a statement that the
country “roundly condemns Israeli aggression against the Palestinian
people and urges the international community to undertake urgent
steps to put an end to these activities and to sanction those
responsible.” (IsraelNationalNews © 2012 03/15/12)
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