After presenting her own investigation to the UN, Mother Agnes told the media that children filmed as victims of the Aug 21 chemical attack in a Damascus suburb had been deliberately moved to the location from a different region after being kidnapped weeks before.
Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib and her group carried out their own investigation. They looked through the 35 videos of the incident that were posted on the internet.
What caught Mother Agnes’ eye was that the same children resurfaced in different videos.
"We see children in a video presented as victims of a chemical attack in Jobar. And then we see the same kids in a video out of Kfar-Batna, and they are claimed to be kids from Kfar-Batna, and then, from Ain Terma. We have seen one and the same boy ostensibly in agony in different settings," she told RT Arabic.
"Who are those children? We want to know the truth," Mother Agnes says.
Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib: We have looked through the first 35 videos of the incident that were posted on the internet. We tried to identify the children we had been told about in those videos. And as we looked closer at those videos, there was a surprise. We found out that the videos that the United States had held up as genuine evidence to indict the Syrian government with having used chemical weapons on its own civilians - those videos had actually been falsified. Specifically, we studied videos One, Six, Eleven, and Thirteen.
RT: Do you make this argument based on your own impressions, or do you have testimonies from witnesses confirming that specific children in the videos do, in fact, come from the families you have mentioned?
MA: First of all, there are family members who say they have recognized their children. They pointed to specific videos from Kfar Batna and Jobar. I cannot go into detail, because I don't have permission from the families to mention names. So I'll put it in general terms: as of now, we know that people have recognized some of the children. In some cases, it was a mother or a father who recognized their child in a video. In other cases, it was an aunt or an uncle, or some other relative, because some of the parents had been killed during the fighting, as the insurgents advanced through the townships and villages of Latakia. I cannot judge whether what those people say is true; that would require a DNA test. As far as we are concerned, we are trying to figure out why all those people would start claiming they see familiar faces in those videos. We look specifically at the footage selected by the Americans, and we see that it has been supplemented with footage provided by Al Jazeera, or by one of the coordination committees. We have 35 videos in our brief, but there are about 200 to 230 videos in total, each different from the others. They are peddled by a variety of sources - from local coordination committees to NGOs to media organizations. As we examined the videos, trying to identify the children in question, we noticed signs suggesting this or that had been staged and directed. For example, there is footage of a boy receiving first aid. And then there is a different video where you can see the same boy receiving first aid all over again, but in a different setting. It is like a movie production, where scenes are repeatedly edited and re-filmed. You shoot one scene, you don't like it, so you alter the settings and you try again.
…We stand for the interests of the Syrian people with all its ethnic and confessional diversity.
Right now, we are drawing up the lists of the killed children. We demand that an investigation be held. Parents have the right to know where their kids are. We ought to find these parents in case a DNA test is needed. They are entitled to know the truth.
We see it as our crucial mission. Every parent must be aware of what happened to their child, whether they are dead or alive. I’m not sure if all the bodies on the footage were bodies of dead children. Talking to the parents of those children is quite an ordeal – but we have to do it. We have to go over each of these tragedies to find the truth. Each tragedy is all-important to me. And the whole thing took such a toll on us that we haven’t had a wink of sleep in a very long time.
Source: Russia Today