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The first high-profile defection

September 1st, 2011 · 2 Comments · Politics

Remember his name: Adnan Mohammed Al-Bakkour. He was Hama’s attorney-general, until he apparently resigned on Monday.

A video, in which a man claiming to be Bakkour appears, has been released. In it, the man says he “resigned from [his] position within Al-Assad regime and his gangs”.

He listed five reasons that led to his decision:

– The killing of detainees in Hama’s central prison on Sunday 31 July, where 72 peaceful protestors who were buried in mass graves

– The mass graves dug in public parks by the security forces and regime thugs, where 420 people are buried – he was ordered to produce a report saying they died at the hands of ‘armed gangs’

– The arbitrary arrest of 10,000 peaceful protestors

– The torture of citizens by the security forces, which has resulted in the deaths of 320 people

– The army’s demolition of whole homes with people still inside them. The corpses were left in the rubble to decompose for several days

Al-Bakkour blames the Interior Minister Mohammed Shaara for personally overseeing the military campaign in Hama, along with a list of local army officials.

Before this video was released, the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) came out with a preemptive statement, alleging that Bakkour had been kidnapped by an armed gang. When I heard that news, alarm bells started to ring – if the opposition had managed to kidnap a regime official, it suggested an escalation in the conflict.

But in a major slip-up, SANA says that Al-Bakkour was forced to make the video statement, thereby acknowledging that the man in the video is indeed Adnan Al-Bakkour.

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Norman // Sep 2, 2011 at 5.17 am

    If he really defected, we should see him free outside the country where he can express himself, otherwise he is just trying to stay alive and saying what the people who are with him want him to say,

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