White Helmets are involved in organ trafficking in Syria

Summary

The White Helmets volunteer group is running a cross-border organ trafficking operation in Syria, according to a report presented during a UN Security Council Panel of Experts in December 2018. The report provides overwhelming evidence of the abuse perpetrated against Syrian civilians living under the occupation of the White Helmets. The UK and other countries that are financing the White Helmets are ignoring this evidence.

Disproof

The news item presents an unverified report to advance the recurring pro-Kremlin narrative about crimes and hoaxes perpetrated by the White Helmets.

The report in question was presented by Maksim Grigoryev, a member of Russia's Civil Chamber, and bases its claims on a "fact-checking" methodology consisting solely of purported witness testimony and unverifiable hearsay. The presenter himself pointed out that Grigoryev's findings are merely "evidence heard" at this point, as the UN has yet to assess their veracity and take an official stance on them.

Russian officials and media outlets have previously used dubious witness accounts to support the Kremlin's narratives about Syria. An interview with an 11-year-old Syrian boy was filmed at a Russian army base and broadcast on the state-owned Rossiya-24 channel as proof that the Douma chemical attack had never occurred. A similar tactic was used at an OPCW hearing in The Hague, where the Russian delegation presented a group of Syrian nationals as supposed witnesses to the fact that the chemical attack never took place.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 138
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 20/02/2019
  • Language/target audience: English
  • Country: Russia, Syria
  • Keywords: Douma, White Helmets, Chemical weapons/attack, UN, Conspiracy
  • Outlet: RT
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CNN is the right hand of NATO and the US State Department

CNN is behaving like the right hand (or the left, or even a leg) of NATO and the US State Department.

Disproof

Conspiracy theory with no evidence. Consistent with pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives attacking and discrediting Western media. More examples are available here and here.

CNN has no connection either to NATO or to the US State DepartmentCNN, an American news-based television channel, was founded in 1980 by American media proprietor Ted Turner and is now owned by Turner Broadcasting System.

Trump asks Europe to withdraw its ISIS mercenaries from Syria

US President Donald Trump called for European countries to withdraw their mercenaries from Syria, which are fighting on behalf of ISIS/Daesh. There are thousands of mercenaries from European countries fighting in Syria.

Disproof

In a tweet, President Trump said: “The United States is asking Britain, France, Germany and other European allies to take back over 800 ISIS fighters that we captured in Syria and put them on trial. The Caliphate is ready to fall. The alternative is not a good one in that we will be forced to release them”.

The article twisted President Trump's meaning using the words “withdraw their mercenaries” to suggest that ISIS combatants are mercenary fighters sent by European governments. In fact, EU countries are part of the global coalition fighting the Islamic State, not supporting it.