Mamlouk – from the blacklist to an official visit in Italy? Open letter demanding accountability

Posted: 03/13/2018 by editormary in Assad, Europe, Middle East Issues, Politics, Syria

mamloukAt the end of February, the Lebanese newspaper Al Akhbar, notoriously close to Hezbollah, reported that one of the most important names of the leadership of the repressive Syrian security apparatuses, Ali Mamlouk, who appears in the European blacklist for those responsible for crimes against humanity, is said to have arrived in Rome to discuss coordination under the name of “fighting terrorism”, expanding a relationship that already exists between the intelligence departments of the two countries. According to Al Akhbar and reported by the prestigious think tank Carnegie Middle East Center, Mamlouk is said to have met at the Viminale, home of the Italian Ministry of the Interior, the heads of the ministry itself and of the Agency for Information and External Security. The meeting is said to have been facilitated by the Lebanese Director of General Security Abbas Ibrahim, who has always been very close to Hezbollah and who seems to have also convinced Rome to send a private plane to pick up the powerful Syrian intelligence chief from Damascus.

The newspapers quoted in fact indicate that Mamlouk’s aim is to collaborate in fighting terrorism in order to obtain support from Italy in order to pressure the EU into softening the European Community position towards the Syrian regime. It is widely known that in recent years Mamlouk has made visits aimed at coordination in combating terrorism in many Arab capitals, especially in the Gulf countries. Therefore, it is conceivable that it became necessary for the regime to be accredited or to boast having special and direct relations also with European countries.

Although the news has been reported by various Arab and international media, there is no trace of it in the Italian media, focused on the political elections, and there has been no confirmation or denial by the Italian government or intelligence in this regard.

Considering as a very serious matter the possibility that our Government and our institutions have agreed to meet an individual who is included in all the international lists of those responsible for crimes against humanity, and in particular on the EU list (see EU regulations No. 504/2011 of 23 May 2011 and No. 442/2011):

– We ask the Italian authorities, and in particular the Ministry of the Interior and the Foreign Affairs Ministry and AISE to verify the truthfulness of what has been reported about this visit, and that, if it is fake news, as we hope it will be, they will be able to release a statement as such.

– We also ask the President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, to verify compliance with the European regulations concerning the sanctions against the perpetrators of war crimes and crimes against humanity perpetrated in Syria, in particular in the context of the upcoming debate regarding Syria to be held Tuesday, 13 March, to the EP in Strasbourg, in the presence of the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini.

We also ask that the question of Ali Mamlouk’s visit and its consequences be adequately included in the resolution that the EP will approve in Strasbourg on 15 March, the anniversary of the Syrian Revolution for Dignity and Democracy.

 Who is Ali Mamlouk?

Key man of the Syrian regime since the birth of Hezbollah in Lebanon, operation in which he cooperated in person, the little-known head of Syrian Political Security, became a leading figure in 2005, the year of the murder of the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri, according to international court investigators on Syrian mandate and by Hezbollah militia. A methodology that he is quite familiar with.

After 2005 he became a key figure on another border, the Iraqi one. As reported by Limes, the Italian journal of geopolitics: “From there, according to various converging sources, he took over the task of organising the journeys of Syrian “jihadist” militias to Iraq in an anti-American function and to show that Damascus has cards to play on the regional table. The Anglo-American invasion began just two years prior to that, and the Iraqi insurgency attracted foreign fighters. Mamlouk coordinated recruitment, starting from Syrian prisons. He himself had helped to fill the cells of presumed or true fundamentalists (today they would be called radicalised) since the mid-80s, and the files were already on his table. It is estimated that in those years the Syrian government sent thousands of jihadists to Iraq to support Iraqi “resistance”. Not only Syrians, also men of other nationalities who used the Syrian territory as a natural bridge to the Anbar and Mesopotamia. ”

One wonders if they are the same bombers who struck Italian forces in Nāṣiriya in November 2003, given the similarities with other attacks that occurred in Lebanon and that a vein of the investigation led straight to Beirut.

The alleged mediation of the Lebanese Director of General Security Abbas Ibrahim then raises further questions, given that Mamlouk is accused of terrorism by the judiciary of the country of the Cedars, being implicated in many terrorist attacks in Lebanon, not least that which should have led to the elimination of the Maronite Patriarch and cardinal of the Catholic Church, His Beatitude Beshara Rai.

SEE also: Diario di Siria

First Signatories

Associazione Comunità Araba Siriana in Italia
The Violations Documentation Center VDC
Syrian Network for Human Rights
SOAS Syria Society
Syrian League for Citizenship
Start Point
Syrians for Truth and Justice-STJ
SCM-Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression
Rethink Rebuild Society
Initiative for New Syria
Syrian Emergency Task Force
Caesar team
Syrie MDL (Moderne Démocratique Laïque)
Hurras network
Comitato Stop the War – Udine for Syria
Osservatorio Iraq, Medio Oriente e Nord Africa
Le Voci della Libertà
Comitato Khaled Bakrawi
Comitato Nour
Committee in Solidarity with the People of Syria (CISPOS)
Mazzaj Band
Basma Syria
Syria Untold

Alhakam Afandi, segretario generale dell’ Associazione Comunità Araba Siriana in Italia
Amedeo Ricucci, giornalista RAI vicepresidente Associazione Giornalisti Amici di Padre Paolo Dall’Olio
Martina Pignatti, presidente dell’ Associazione Un Ponte Per
Giorgio Menchini, presidente COSPE
Debora Angeli, vicepresidente COSPE
Riccardo Cristiano, giornalista Reset presidente Associazione Giornalisti Amici di Padre Paolo Dall’Olio
Laura Silvia Battaglia, giornalista freelance
Joseph Halevi, economista
Asmae Dachan, giornalista freelance
Leila Al Shami, scrittrice
Luca Geronico, giornalista di Avvenire
Umberto De Giovannangeli, giornalista collaboratore Huffington Post Italia
Gianluca Solera, autore di Riscatto Mediterraneo
Elena Zin, Presidente di Amaal
Fouad Roueiha, Comitato Khaled Bakrawi
Maria Laura Bufano
Alberto Savioli, archeologo
Mari Indennitate, Le Voci della Libertà
Mona Zeineddine, SOAS Syria Society
Francesco Petronella, collaboratore esteri
Cecilia Dalla Negra, Osservatorio Iraq, Medio Oriente e Nord Africa
Tania Hashem, USA
Moaz Mustafa, Syrian Emergency Task Force
Enrico De Angelis
Riccardo Bella
Samia Akkad, ricercatrice
Damiano Duchemin, Osservatorio Iraq, Medio Oriente e Nord Africa
Jessica Leyland, SOAS Syria Society
Caterina Coppola, blogger e attivista
Marina Centonze, Le Voci della Libertà
Mjriam Abu Samra, ricercatrice
Franco Casagrande
Antonietta Benedetti, Bianca Volta Edizioni
Giovanna De Luca, blogger
Donatella Amina Salina
Alice Bonfatti, SOAS Syria Society
Sara Buzzoni Project Manager presso Norwegian Refugee Council
Donatella Della Ratta, John Cabot University
Mary Rizzo, Le Voci della Libertà
Francesca Scalinci, ricercatrice
Maria D’Angiolini
Aurora Sottimano, Lecturer Università di Leiden
Leila Zimmermann, SOAS Syria Society
Loretta Facchinetti
Ahmad Sadiddin, agronomo FAO
Federico A.Cuscito, Communia
Cinzia Nachira, Cinzia Nachira, redazione rproject
Sami Haddad, Università L’Orientale di Napoli
Kester Ratcliff
Joey Husseini Ayoub, Hummus For Thought
Mariam Mahmoud – SOAS Syria Society
Lamia Ledrisi, Osservatorio Iraq, Medio Oriente e Nord Africa
Alessandra Mecozzi
Alessandra Fabbretti, giornalista agenzia DIRE
Piero Maestri, Communia
Alessandra Raggi
Pier Francesco Pandolfi de Rinaldis
Nawal Soufi, attivista
Paolo Pasta, Comitato Khaled Bakrawi
Giovanni Piazzese, Osservatorio Iraq, Medio Oriente e Nord Africa
Germano Monti, Comitato Khaled Bakrawi
Sara De Buzzicons, NRC Middle East
Lisanna Genuardi, Comitato Nour
Filomena Annunziata, Università L’Orientale di Napoli
Annalisa Roveroni. Civic Coop. Soc. Onlus
Enzio Zuffo. Istituto Sviluppo Olistico ISO Onlus
Ange Red Lee
Veronica Bellintani, attivista e studentessa in transitional justice – Italia/Turchia
Brada Tedeschi Guerriero
Debora Del Pistoia, Osservatorio Iraq, Medio Oriente e Nord Africa
Mariella D’Angiolini
Meniar Al Zoubi
Angela Bernardini
Sara De Angelis, Comitato Nour
Barbara Navarro
Emanuele Calitri
Anna Rita Canone

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