‘Staged and Scripted’: Mother Agnes Finalizes Chronology of Damascus Chemical Attack
SYRIA IN CONTEXT, 30 Sep 2013
(TMS Editor’s Note: Mother Agnes was the organizer and leader, along with Nobel Peace laureate Mairead Maguire, of the Peace Mission to Beirut and Damascus in which I participated in May 2013 [my report here] – Antonio C. S. Rosa)
26 Sep 2013 – A new version of a study produced by Mother Agnes, a catholic nun, pointing to a number of fabricated videos used as evidence of complicity by the Assad government in a recent chemical attack is in the works.
The report by the Christian nun, Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib, mother superior of St. James Monastery in Qara, Syria, has alleged that many videos featuring supposed victims of the chemical weapons attack in the Syrian village of Ghouta in August  were in fact staged and scripted.
The question for the nun now revolves around the “humanitarian” question of what happened to the children featured in the video. “Those children are the children of whom? From where did you get them? Why are you using them and manipulating them?”
The Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic was created in August 2011 by the Human Rights Council to investigate alleged violations of human rights.
RT: What exactly led you to the conclusion that the videos of the chemical attack were fabricated?
Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib: I have been contacted by families from the province of Lattakia. They alleged that they discovered victims, the children that are presented as victims of the chemical attacks in Eastern Ghouta, would be their own children. They had asked me to interfere, so I had to study a little bit of those videos to see where those children are carried, because in some videos they are alive and in some videos they seem not to be alive.
I came to identify in many videos real staging, real screen playing and today after having redacted a study concerning my first impression, I called it a better version.
Today I’m just finishing the chronology of those videos and of the action they are unveiling to the public opinion. I’m more and more convinced that it is not the coverage of an ongoing reality, the ongoing emergency of chemical strikes, but a kind of screen playing with a script that has been worked on many days before.
RT: Are you an expert on chemical weapons and film-making?
MA: We see kind of manipulations of corpses. For example in an average timeframe between 2-5 hours we see bodies that are not cured that are not healed, we see them take them from one place to another. They put them in a scenography way just to make the shooting. These are not confirmed to what they are pretending – they are showing us as they say victims of an imminent chemical attack. So I have found a lot of screenplay and all of them, they are very well documented. We could derive from the web the real chronology, the real time frame of their uploading. And it is obvious, nobody can deny this.
I’m not an expert, I’m not military, I’m not a medical expert – I am a just an observer, a normal citizen and as a nun I’m trying to find out what is the fate of those little children. If they are from the North, from Lattakia, I would like to know where they are. If they are not from North Lattakia, we also have the proof that they have no families.
So please tell us – those children are the children of whom? From where did you get them? Why are you using them and manipulating them? Are they alive or are they dead? Now it is a humanitarian case and we’re asked to bring it to the highest level of the humanitarian and human rights community in the world.
RT: How did the UN respond to your findings?
MA: I said directly in a meeting with the commission of inquiry that I have been viewing the videos and that my impression was that they were a fake. They were very much interested. They’ve asked me to transmit to them the videos as well as my own observation.
Until today I have just transmitted to the commission of inquiry and also to the office of the high commissioner of human rights in Geneva my 50-page study. I did not transmit until today the videos because I wanted to be sure about my work and I will transmit to them, remit to them in an official way the whole work of chronology and evidences that they will be able to see, to view it in an audio-visual way.
Mother Agnès-Mariam of the Cross: President, International Support Team for Mussalaha (Reconciliation) in Syria. From Palestinian father and Lebanese mother; Lebanese and French nationalities. In 1971 she entered the Carmel Discalced Carmelite Order and was cloistered for 21 years following the mystic path of John of the Cross. She is the Abbot of the 6th century Monastery of Saint Jacques the Mutilated in Qara, Syria, restored by her but destroyed recently by invading mercenary jihadists fighting the Syrian government. Founder of the Order of the Unit of Antioch, Melkite Greek Catholic Church.
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