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FALSE FLAG 3.0?: Syrian “Rebels” Accuse Gov’t of Chlorine Gas Attack, Army Calls It Fabrication

In Archive, Syria, Terrorism on July 2, 2017 at 7:05 AM

07/01/2017

Reuters:

A Syrian rebel group accused the Syrian army of using chlorine gas against its fighters on Saturday in battles east of Damascus – an accusation the military swiftly denied as a fabrication.

The Failaq al-Rahman group said more than 30 people suffered suffocation as a result of the attack in Ain Tarma in the Eastern Ghouta region, which government forces have been battling to take back from insurgents.

In a statement circulated by state-run media, a military source said the army command completely denied the accusation. “It has not used any chemical weapons in the past, and will not use them at any time”.

The United States said on Wednesday the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad appeared so far to have heeded a warning issued earlier in the week not to carry out a chemical weapons attack after saying it saw possible preparations for one.

Western governments including the United States say the Syrian government was behind an April gas attack in the town of Khan Sheikhoun that killed dozens. In response, the United States fired cruise missiles at the air base from which it said the attack was launched.

The Syrian government has denied any role in that attack.

On Saturday the government also dismissed a report by the international chemical weapons watchdog that said the banned nerve agent sarin was used in the April attack in Khan Sheikhoun, saying it lacked “any credibility”.
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SANA:

The General Command of the Army and Armed Forces said that claims made by some websites affiliated with terrorist groups about the Syrian Arab Army using chlorine gas against terrorists from “Failaq al-Rahman” in Ein Tarma are false and baseless.

In a statement on Saturday evening, the General Command said that some websites affiliated with terrorist groups are reporting false and baseless news in which they claim that the Syrian Arab Army used chlorine gas against terrorists from the so-called Failaq al-Rahman in Ein Tarma the Eastern Ghouta area in Damascus Countryside.

The General Command refuted these claims part and parcel, affirming that it never used chemical weapons before and will never use them as it doesn’t even possess them, asserting that these lies and false narratives have become apparent to everyone and cannot fool anyone, as they are fabricated by the terrorist groups to justify their defeats and heavy losses whenever the Syrian Arab Army makes progress in an area.

An official source at the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry affirmed on Thursday that Syria has disposed of its chemical program completely as specialized international organizations can attest, stressing that Syria does not possess any chemical weapons and denounces their use strongly in any place, for any purpose, and under any pretext, asserting that Syria has never used toxic chemicals since the beginning of the crisis and that it cooperated with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) fully following its joining of the chemical weapons convention.
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Related Links:

Seymour Hersh Debunks Syria Chemical Attack False Flag 1.0 & 2.0

Nusra Preparing Sarin ‘Provocation’ in Syria’s Khan Sheikhoun, Kefraya – Source – 07/02/2017

Terrorists in Syria to Stage Chemical Provocations to Justify US Strikes -Moscow – 07/06/2017

Inside Halab: Islamic State Hostage John Cantlie Reports from Aleppo

In Archive, Cantlie, ISIS, Islamic State, Syria on February 9, 2015 at 3:11 PM

02/09/2015

British hostage John Cantlie has appeared in a new Islamic State propaganda video titled “Inside Halab (Aleppo)”. The 12-minute video was produced by IS’ foreign language division al-Hayat Media Center, and distributed via social media today.

In the video, the captive journalist walks through the rubble of heavily bombed Aleppo, showing how the city, despite having been “smashed to rubble” by US-led coalition bombings, as well as the Syrian army, still functions under IS and enjoys a “thriving economy.”

Cantlie then appears inside of a school run by IS. “One of the common accusations of the West is that under the Islamic State, education will suffer,” Cantlie says, “But here in Halab, these young men are learning Qur’an recital and languages and, with any luck, they will form the mujahideen for the next generation in this region.”

Cantlie talks about drone surveillance of the area by coalition forces and drone strikes against IS. Cantlie claims the jihadists are not affected by the bombings and often “enjoy a relaxing cup of tea,” continue to build new homes in Aleppo, and just “getting on with it.”

A recently bomb-attacked market is next on the list of places Cantlie visits. Through Cantlie, the IS alleges that U.S. drones identify targets and the Syrian regime launches airstrikes on them. “All this follows a drone which we saw five minutes ago, and then Assad’s air force comes in and drops bombs on the market,” Cantlie says. “Now, as far as I know, the Syrian Air Force does not have drones. That must have been an American drone. That was definitely an Assad bomb dropping here on the market. So what’s going on? Someone is working with someone around here to drop bombs.”

Next, seen sitting inside an Islamic State court, Cantlie talks about Shari’ah law. “It is one-thousand four-hundred years old, and it is the rule of God, the rule of Allah, and therefore it cannot be changed, unlike the laws of democratic countries which change to fit every circumstance or to fit every different week,” Cantlie says. “The rules of Shariah are remarkably simple, if you are convicted of robbery with the correct number of witnesses and such forth, you have your hand cut off. Sounds harsh, but you’re not going to commit the same crime again, and it will dissuade others from doing the same.”

“Like any other law court in the world, they’re playing TV in the background,” Cantlie says as he sits with others in the Sharia’ah court waiting room. “This being the Islamic State, they’re playing Islamic State videos. I must say, they’re a lot more entertaining than watching the news at six.”

Finally, Cantlie interviews 2 IS fighters, one of whom calls for more attacks in France. The interviewed French fighter indicated that he and colleagues learned about the Paris attacks only a few days before, which potentially dates that video segment as being recorded in early- to mid-January 2015. The fighter urges Muslims in France to carry out more lone-wolf attacks, and warning attacking nations of the West, “we have also come to strike you, and we are already there to attack you. Muslims in the West number in the millions, and they are capable of inflicting mass carnage. So I call on them to move forward and do what is obligatory on them in support of their religion.”

Cantlie indicated that this is the last video in the “From Inside…” series, in which he gave tours of Kobane and Mosul in previous episodes. Cantlie also appears in an earlier series titled “Lend Me Your Ears,” and has written articles for IS’ DABIQ magazine. The Islamic State has held Cantlie captive for more than two years now.

Islamic State Claims US Female Hostage Kayla Mueller Killed By Jordan Airstrike

In Archive, ISIS, Islamic State, Jordan, Mueller, Syria, Terrorism on February 7, 2015 at 5:50 AM

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02/06/2015

Source

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Translation:

The Failed Jordanian Aircraft Killed an American Female Hostage

The criminal Crusader coalition aircraft bombarded a site outside the city of ar-Raqqah today at noon while the people were performing the Friday prayer. The air assaults were continuous on the same location for more than an hour.

Allah made their pursuit disappointed and deterred their cunning, and no mujahid was injured in the bombardment, and all praise is due to Allah.

It was confirmed to us the killing of an American female hostage by fire of the shells dropped on the site, and she is Kayla Jean Mueller.

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NYTimes/WashPost:

She had always been the unidentified, lone female American hostage of the Islamic State. For nearly 17 months, while her fellow American captives were beheaded one after another in serial executions posted onlne, Kayla Mueller’s name remained a closely guarded secret, whispered among reporters, government officials and hostage negotiators — all fearing that any public mention might imperil her life.

On Friday, the Islamic State confirmed her identity, announcing that Mueller, a 26-year-old aid worker from Prescott, Ariz., had been killed in the falling rubble of a building in northern Syria that it said had been struck by bombs from a Jordanian warplane.

But the group’s use of Mueller’s name for the first time prompted her family and its advisers to confirm her prolonged captivity in a statement and changed the calculus about what could be reported about her life. It threw a spotlight on a hostage ordeal that befell an eager and deeply idealistic young woman, who had ventured into one of the most dangerous parts of Syria — apparently without the backing of an aid organization, according to interviews with advisers to the family and employees of Doctors Without Borders, the international medical charity that hosted Mueller during her brief stay in one of Syria’s ravaged cities.

Mueller, who was born in 1988, had a deep desire to help those less fortunate. After graduating from Northern Arizona University, she worked for aid organizations in India and Israel and in the occupied Palestinian territories, according to statement from her family. In 2012, she was drawn to what would soon become the world’s top humanitarian crisis, the Syrian civil war. She moved to Turkey, where many Syrians were seeking refuge, and she settled in a border town assisting Syrian families for the Danish Refugee Council and an aid group called Support to Life. “The common thread of Kayla’s life has been her quiet leadership and strong desire to serve others,” her family said in the statement.

In an interview with The Daily Courier in Arizona, Ms. Mueller described how fulfilled she felt by her work with refugees, which included leading art classes for displaced Syrian children.

“For as long as I live, I will not let this suffering be normal,” she said.

Initially based in southern Turkey, where she had worked for at least two aid organizations assisting Syrian refugees, Mueller appears to have driven into the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on Aug. 3, 2013, alongside a man who has been alternatively described as her Syrian friend or colleague, and by others as either her boyfriend or her fiancé. He had been invited to travel to the city to help fix the Internet connection for a compound run by the Spanish chapter of Doctors Without Borders, known in Spanish as Médicos Sin Fronteras (MSF). Employees of the charity said they were surprised when the young Syrian man arrived with Mueller.

“On Aug. 3, 2013, a technician sent by a company contracted by MSF arrived at one of the organization’s structures in Aleppo, Syria, to perform repairs. Unbeknown to the MSF team, Kayla, a friend of the technician’s, was accompanying him,” said the group’s spokesman, Tim Shenk, in a statement.

It took longer than expected to finish the repair work, and as night approached, MSF agreed to let the two stay overnight, out of concern for their safety, said Mr. Shenk. The next day the charity arranged to transport them to an Aleppo bus stop, where they planned to catch a bus back to Turkey.

They never made it. They were abducted on the road, the statement said.

Although Mueller had moved to Turkey in December 2012 to work with two organizations helping refugees — including the Danish Refugee Council — she was not employed by either of those groups when she entered Syria at a time when numerous foreigners already had been kidnapped inside the country, said the Mueller family advisers. What she was doing in Aleppo — beyond accompanying her Syrian companion — remains unclear.

The family advisers said there was not any indication that she had been working with an aid group when she went to Aleppo. She had no professional connection to the MSF compound, said Carlos Francisco Cabello, the current head of the Spanish division of Doctors Without Borders’ Syria mission.

“She appeared there with the external technician in a war zone. We didn’t know that she was coming, or otherwise we would not allow her to visit,” Cabello said, speaking by telephone from Turkey. “U.S. and U.K. citizens at that moment, and even now, were not considered for the Syrian mission for MSF for obvious security reasons,” he said.

“She was never employed by MSF-Spain in Syria. This must be clear,” he said, adding, “Aleppo at that time and now is a war zone.”

Mueller’s companion, who was released after several months, declined to be interviewed.

“There is a lot of murkiness about what she was doing there. That’s been the problem — no one really knows,” said one adviser of the Muellers.

In the statement released Friday, the family said that it had received the first message from Mueller’s captors in May 2014 — nine months after her disappearance. Islamic State provided initial proof that she was alive, the family said.

Then on July 12, 2014, Islamic State announced that it would kill her within 30 days unless the family provided a ransom of 5 million euros ($5.6 million), or exchanged her for Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani scientist educated in America who was convicted of trying to kill American soldiers and FBI agents in Afghanistan in 2008. She is serving a sentence in a Texas jail, according to an email explaining the demands forwarded to The New York Times by an acquaintance of the Muellers. When the deadline passed, nothing happened, prompting the family to hope that Mueller might be spared.

During those 30 days, her parents shared their ordeal only with the tight-knit group of advisers and with parents of other American hostages held by the Islamic State. Together the anxious parents traveled to Washington to meet Obama administration officials to push for the release of their children. That was shortly before the United States began airstrikes against the Islamic State in concert with European and Arab allies. Soon after, in August, the Islamic State posted the first of its decapitation videos, starting with the beheading of the American James Foley, and then in quick succession the fellow Americans Steven Sotloff and Peter Kassig.

A group of concerned advisers helping the Muellers dispatched negotiators to Turkey, Qatar, Lebanon and Iraq in an effort to find a way to contact the Islamic State to negotiate Mueller’s release. They spent many hours parsing messages by the Islamic State, trying to answer the crucial question: Would the group, which had shown no qualms about killing American male hostages, go so far as to behead a 26-year-old woman?

They feared the worst after the Islamic State released a video on Tuesday showing the immolation of a captured Jordanian pilot, a killing that shocked the world and particularly infuriated Jordan. In retaliation, the Jordanians then executed two prisoners convicted of terrorism, including an Al-Qaeda-linked woman who had tried to blow up a hotel in Amman.

The Jordanians then began their own extensive bombings of Islamic State targets in Syria.

It was one of those attacks, the Islamic State said in its message Friday, that killed Mueller.

Both the Jordanian and American governments said there was no proof, even as they rushed to deplore her possible death. Top Jordanian officials said the announcement was cynical propaganda.

In an interview, a senior Jordanian official expressed skepticism about the Islamic State’s claim and said that the building pictured in the image distributed by the group was a “weapons warehouse.”

The official, Mohammad ­al-Momani, Jordan’s media affairs minister, did not indicate how he knew that or say whether the building had been targeted by the Jordanian military or other members of the U.S.-led coalition in Iraq and Syria.

Instead, Momani said that the latest Islamic State claim was “part of their media spinning/PR campaign, and it’s not the first time they do this.” The militants, he said, “are constantly trying to drive a wedge in the coalition [and] playing with public opinion. We need to be careful not to fall into this trap.”

He questioned how the Islamic State would have been able to identify any warplanes as Jordanian at such an altitude.

Some have also speculated that the Islamic State might have killed Mueller beforehand and taken the opportunity to blame the Jordanian bombs in her death.

A U.S. intelligence official said authorities were mindful of the possibility that the Islamic State might claim that a hostage had been killed in an airstrike by the U.S.-led coalition. The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter, said there were no negotiations with the Islamic State.

Although Arab nations, including Jordan, have participated in what have been about 1,000 coalition airstrikes in Syria since September, the vast majority of them have been carried out by the United States.

None of the strikes announced by Central Command in recent days have indicated targets near Raqqa, a city in north-central Syria where the coalition has been reluctant to drop bombs because of the risk of civilian casualties.

A Central Command spokesman said in a statement that officials would be “unable to confirm details on any of today’s airstrikes” until Saturday.

Mueller was believed to have been held with other Islamic State hostages. Nicolas Henin, a French journalist who was freed in April, said in a message on Twitter on Friday that Mueller was among the last of his former cellmates still detained.

In early July, U.S. Special Operations forces launched a rescue attempt to save Western hostages thought to be held near Raqqa. The commandos, however, found no hostages at the site of the raid.

Based on evidence collected at the site, including strands of hair believed to be from Mueller, U.S. intelligence concluded that American captives had been there but had been moved a day to a week before the raid, according to a U.S. official familiar with the operation.

Mueller’s parents issued a statement Friday evening expressing hope that she may still be alive and urging her captors to contact them privately.

“You told us that you treated Kayla as your guest, as your guest her safety and wellbeing remains your responsibility,” Carl and Marsha Mueller said in the statement.

The Obama administration, whose policy has been not to negotiate or agree to concessions with hostage-takers, is continuing an internal review, ordered by President Obama, of how the United States deals with hostage crises. Speaking at the Brookings Institution on Friday, Rice said that that refusal is not part of the review and will not be changed.

Instead, she said, officials are looking at “how we can support and be more responsible to the needs of the families” enduring a hostage taking and how “within the confines of the non-concessions policy, we might do better.”

Jordanian Pilot Kaseasbeh Burned Alive by Islamic State; Jordan Executes IS Requested Prisoner Rishawi in Response

In Archive, ISIS, Islamic State, Jordan, Kasaesbeh, Syria, Terrorism on February 4, 2015 at 2:07 AM

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02/03/2015

Islamic State released a 22 minute video on Tuesday titled “Healing the Believers’ Chests,” showing captured Jordanian air force pilot Mu’ath al-Kaseasbeh (PDF) being burnt alive in a cage.

Initially sat at a table, facing into a camera and speaking calmly, Kaseasbeh describes the mission he was due to carry out before his jet crashed last December and he was captured by the Islamic State. He appears with graphics overlaid describing the “Crusader Coalition” of “Canada, France, US, Britain, Australia, Jordan, the Emirates, Saudi, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, Morocco,” and noting the name and location of the various airports used in the areal campaign against IS.

Addressing the Jordanian people, Kaseasbeh urges them to question Jordan’s claim of being a defender of Islam, and asks them why Jordan is not bombing the Jews and the Syrian regime instead. “Know that our government is an agent of the Zionists,” he says. Addressing the families of other pilots, Kaseasbeh calls upon them not to send their children on missions whose goal is targeting other Muslims. Doing so will ensure that “what happened to me doesn’t happen to your sons.”

Footage of the aftermath of coalition airstrikes is then shown, with people trying to remove civilians from debris.

Kaseasbeh is seen amid some destroyed buildings, walking in slow-motion to his death past a long line of Islamic State fighters, dressed in khaki and balaclavas and holding assault rifles.

The pilot is put in a cage, with flammable liquid splashed on his orange clothing and trailed along the ground. After the trail of fire to his cage is ignited by one of the masked fighters, he is seen standing as the flames consume him and he slowly dies, falling to his knees.

Fighters then pour debris, including broken masonry, over the cage which a bulldozer subsequently flattens with the body still inside.

Islamic State-affiliated Twitter accounts had been holding discussions among its supporters, asking for ways to “execute the captured pilot.”An Arabic Twitter trend started by IS, “Suggest a Way to Kill the Jordanian Pilot Pig” (#اقترح_طريقة_لقتل_الطيار_الاردني_الخنزير) has been widely shared among its followers. Vocativ reported that the hashtag had been shared over 1,000 times among IS supporters, who suggested several brutal ways to kill the pilot. Some of the ideas included beheading Kaseasbeh, burning him alive, and making a bulldozer run over his body.

Islamic State circulated a document citing Prophet Mohammed burning apostates alive,  and posted quotes from the Quran and Imams (PDF), to justify burning Kaseasbeh alive.

Jordanian state television said on Tuesday that Kaseasbeh had been killed a month ago on Jan. 3, before Islamic State offered to spare his life and free a Japanese journalist in return for the release of attempted Iraqi female suicide bomber Sajida al-Rishawi held in Jordan. A source close to the Jordanian government said Amman had been picking up intelligence for weeks that the pilot was killed some time ago. Given that Jordan’s own intelligence indicated the pilot was dead, the government decided it could not possibly release the woman absent convincing proof the pilot was still alive, the source said, and such proof never arrived.

At the end of the video text appears on-screen stating, a bounty issued by Islamic State to anyone who kills “a crusader pilot”: “On this occasion, the Islamic State announces a reward of 100 gold dinars to whoever kills a crusader pilot. The diwan for state security has released a list containing the names of Jordanian pilots participating in the campaign. So good tiding to whoever supports his religion and achieves a kill that will liberate him from hellfire.”

Following the statement, detailed information of Jordanian pilots is shown, including their names, alleged addresses and geolocations, Facebook pages and other personal information.

Jordan, which has been mounting air raids in Syria as part of the U.S.-led alliance against Islamic State insurgents, would deliver a “strong, earth-shaking and decisive” response, a government spokesman said.

“The revenge will be as big as the calamity that has hit Jordan,” army spokesman Colonel Mamdouh al Ameri said in a televised statement confirming the death of Kaseasbeh.

Hours after the video emerged online, a security official said executions would begin at daybreak.

Sajida al-Rishawi was named as the first slated to go to the gallows. Jordan agreed last week to release Rishawi, who was facing execution for her role in the 2005 hotel bombings in Amman, but first wanted proof their pilot was alive. Islamic State never provided that proof.

Ziad al-Karboli, an Iraqi Al-Qaeda operative and aide to a former AQI leader, who was convicted in 2008 for killing a Jordanian, was also executed at dawn. It was reported last week that Karboli may also have been part of the prisoner exchange demanded by IS.

The Jordanian military might also escalate attacks on Islamic State, said retired air force General Mamoun Abu Nowar. “We might even see in a couple of days the rate of sorties increased dramatically. We might have some special operations against their leadership too,” he said.

Jordan’s King Abdullah was in the United States when he heard news of the brutal murder, prompting him to cut short his visit, after meeting with US president Barack Obama.

“This [is] cowardly terror by a criminal group that has no relation to Islam … It’s the duty of all citizens to stand together,” the King said in a short televised appearance.

US President Obama was quick to condemn the killing and said it was clear IS was only interested in death and in destruction. “Should in fact this video be authentic, it’s just one more indication of the viciousness [and] barbarity of this organisation,” Obama said. “And it, I think, will redouble the vigilance and determination on the part of a global coalition to make sure that they are degraded and ultimately defeated.”

The United States announced it will increase annual aid to Jordan to $1 billion from $660 million to help it pay for the cost of housing refugees from Iraq and Syria and to fight the Islamic State.

(GRAPHIC VIDEO) Islamic State Beheads Japanese Journalist Kenji Goto

In Archive, Goto, ISIS, Islamic State, Japan, Jihadi John, Kasaesbeh, Syria, Terrorism on January 31, 2015 at 5:12 PM

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01/31/2015

Islamic State released a video on Saturday which shows the beheading of Japanese journalist Kenji Goto, ending days of negotiations by diplomats to save the man.

The video, called “A Message to the Government of Japan,” shows IS executioner “Jihadi John” standing over Goto with a knife held to his throat, followed by footage of Goto’s body with his head placed on it.

Jihadi John:

“To the Japanese government.

You, like your foolish allies in the satanic coalition, have yet to understand that we by Allah’s grace are Islamic caliphate with authority and power. An entire army thirsty for your blood.

Abe, because of your reckless decision to take part in an unwinnable war, this knife will not only slaughter Kenji, but will also carry on and cause carnage wherever your people are found. So let the nightmare for Japan begin.”

Goto says nothing in the roughly one-minute-long video.

The landscape in the video shows a hill and land covered in scrub, and appears different to the desert setting of previous videos.

Release of the video comes exactly a week after footage showing the beheaded body of another Japanese hostage Haruna Yukawa.

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the Cabinet was convening an emergency meeting and was rushing to confirm the authenticity of the online video. U.S. officials said they were also trying to confirm its authenticity.

Abe strongly condemned “the terrorist act” and pledged that Japan “will never give in to terrorism.”

“I feel heartbreaking pain,” Abe told reporters. “I will never forgive terrorists. To have them pay for their crimes, I will work with the international community. Japan will keep expanding humanitarian aid, such as food and medical assistance.”

Abe also said he thanks “leaders of the world and friends of Japan,” who cooperated to try and save the two Japanese hostages, in particular Jordan’s King Abdullah II. “[The king] gave us full support. On behalf of the [Japanese] nation, I’d like to thank him,” Abe said.

Saturday’s video made no mention of Jordanian air force pilot Mu’ath al-Kaseasbeh (PDF), whose fate had been linked to that of Goto. Kaseasbeh was captured after his fighter plane went down in December over an Islamic State-controlled area of Syria. Earlier this week, Jordan had offered to free an Al-Qaeda prisoner for the pilot, but after IS failed to respond to a request for proof that Kaseasbeh was still alive, the swap never moved forward.

A prominent Islamic State account tweeted on Wednesday after Jordan’s proof of life request, that Kaseasbeh had been beheaded when the deadline imposed by the group passed.

Another top IS account tweeted yesterday that a forthcoming media release from the group related to Kaseasbeh would be coming soon.

Translation:

Moaz the apostate
Soon a new release will be circulated from
Mu’assassat al-Furqan
Stay tuned stay tuned

UPDATE 02/03/2015 Jordanian Pilot Kaseasbeh Burned Alive by Islamic State; Jordan Executes IS Requested Prisoner Rishawi in Response

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