Al Arabiya declines to publish Assad’s ‘very personal emails’


None of the “very personal emails” of President Bashar al-Assad or his wife Asmaa al-Akhras were screened or published, Al Arabiya said on Friday.

The pan-Arab news channel said that many “private” messages were in their inbox among thousands of emails leaked by Syrian activists and obtained by Al Arabiya, but the channel declined to screen or publish them on any of its platforms.

Al Arabiya underscored that all the emails that it has published were related to the Syrian ongoing crisis. They reflected the nature of the situation inside the presidential palace and the inner circle linked to the President, showing how he managed the crisis. Al Arabiya decided not to publish the emails or pictures that had nothing to do with the current Syrian crisis; thus reflecting the channel’s commitment to the rules of the profession.

Al Arabiya News Channel had obtained thousands of emails leaked by Syrian activists from the inbox of Assad and his wife Asmaa. Al Arabiya Al Hadath has been exposed to intensive jamming -- probably through special jamming devices -- on its frequencies on the Nilesat since Thursday when it started to screen the leaked documents. Due to the continuing and deliberate jamming of Al Arabiya Al Hadath, the channel will re-screen the first six chapters of the documents on its main screen Al Arabiya within the coming few days.

The emails were exchanged last year since the first months of the revolution and stopped on Feb. 7, when President Assad received an email from his brother-in-law Firas al-Akhras informing him that his emails have been leaked. The email included a link leading to the “Bikyamasr” news website, which reported that the inbox of the Ministry of Presidential Affairs has been leaked. Right after receiving that message, all the email addresses of the President and his wife were shut down.

After reviewing thousands of the leaked emails, journalists at Al Arabiya said that none of the emails were exchanged with senior military or government officials in the country. There weren’t any exchange of emails with members of the Assad family as well, but most of emails were exchanged with members of his wife’s family and his close friends who belonged to his inner circle.

President Assad, according to the leaked emails, has other means of communication with his close associates, including other email addresses and Facebook accounts as well as mobile chatting applications.

There were many private pictures and emails, which Al Arabiya declined to screen or publish as they were not related to the Syrian crisis. Hundreds of “scandalous” emails were accordingly deleted by Al Arabiya.