Syrian journalist calls pro-Assad media figures ‘liars’ during a conference


During the so-called “Conference on the right of citizens to the media” which took place in the Syrian capital Damascus on Monday, a woman stood among the crowds and criticized the media figures of the Syrian regime headed by Bashar al-Assad, saying “they are manufacturing lies”.

Wafaa Samour took the conference shocked the attendance since she was not listed as a speaker. Nevertheless, she began talking and introduced herself as a Syrian journalist who writes for foreign media. She said that she had already met with the director of the Assad news agency “SANA”, stressing that he told her that the editors are so afraid that they call each other whenever one of them leaves his office, wondering: “If the editor is afraid, what about the rest of the people?”

“Journalists have to be impartial, the Syrian media is not patriotic, because if they were, the Syrian judiciary would not have blown up,” Samour said in reference to the recent bombing of a court house in Damascus which left dozens dead a few weeks ago.

When the moderator tried to interrupt her and prevent her from speaking, she said, “You are lying to protect Assad. You are the one keeping him in his post. I won’t allow you to take away my freedom of speech”.

The director of the session tried to cut her off again, saying: “We are in a respectful place and we have certain standards of communications,” to which she replied: “You are the ones who are being disrespectful.”

One of the conference staff then pulled the microphone out of her hand and ended her intervention by force.

The conference on Monday was dedicated to media professionals and attended by Syria’s minister of information and the heads of Syrian media institutions.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 14:00 - GMT 11:00