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Syria. The main Italian newspaper trusts the words of an al Qaeda “activist”
On 7 February, the main Italian newspaper Corriere della sera (see attached screenshot) (https://www.corriere.it/politica/23_febbraio_07/diktat-zein-figlia-assad-attenti-non-aiutate-quelle-zone-b634c388-a732-11ed-b9c4-8c4ac5be6a91.shtml ) writes: “The tremors, the dead, the darkness, the frost, the hunger, the fear. And Assad. Of the seven plagues of Syria, the last one is the worst (...) A few hours after the earthquake, when columns of dust were still rising from the destroyed houses, while people were digging with their bare hands to pull out corpses and the wounded, the Syrian army bombed. Raids and shelling on Marea, in north-west Syria, 25 km north of Aleppo. 'A truly callous and heinous attack', denounces the British government”. But who says so? With what evidence? There you have it: the denunciation starts, by hearsay (relata refero), from Middle East Eye (Mee), a media financed by the government of Qatar, the only Arab country that has not sent solidarity to Syria ater the earthquake and that has been the most determined to support Islamist groups politically and in arms in recent years (together with Western countries and Turkey).
And what is Mee's source for his denunciation (https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/syria-earthquake-government-bombed-areas-hit-disaster )? Says the article: “Syrian sources and British politicians”. Discarding the latter, geographically somewhat distant, the “Syrian sources” remain. Among them, a “military source”: the adjective hides the fact that Marea has long been controlled by Ahrar al Sham, part of the al Nusra Front, Qaedist organisations, internationally classified as terrorist. Mee uoted also a socalled “civilian source” who allegedly heard the gunfire. It is Mamoun al-Khatib, described as an “activist living in Marea”. In the area controlled by terrorists, it is quite easy to imagine who an activist is. In the same article, Mee naively links to a piece of news evidently unwelcome to Qatar: 'The EU signals its willingness to work with the Assad government'. A possibility that had to be nipped in the bud, evidently. Perhaps not many believed it (the Corriere della sera did). In the programme Nessun luogo è lontano, on Radio24 (https://www.radio24.ilsole24ore.com/programmi/luogo-lontano/puntata/trasmissione-08-febbraio-2023-160930-AEa4bwjC ), from Lebanon, a journalist who is no friend of Syrian government explains that he asked reliable people on the ground, in Marea, and no one had heard about the bombings.
There is also another aspect: the area surrounding Marea is controlled by several Kurdish factions and there are no Syrian National Army troops. Is it decent for Corriere della sera to report the claims of an Ahrar al Sham activist who without providing any evidence or clues addresses the Qatari megaphone?