Quirico: 'I don't know who used the gas in Syria'

'Hearsay through a door is not verifiable information'

09 September, 20:28

    (ANSAmed) - TURIN, SEPTEMBER 9 - La Stampa correspondent Domenico Quirico, who was released last night after five months of captivity in Syria, wrote on Monday that he ''can't tell'' who used poison gas in Syria.

    ''We were prisoners. I don't have the elements with which to judge the veracity of something we overheard through a half-open door. I am used to only holding verified information to be true.

    In this case I couldn't verify anything. Alleging that I know that Assad did not use the gas is pure madness'', Quirico wrote on La Stampa online.

    The reporter's disclaimer follows on a statement made earlier by his fellow prisoner Belgian teacher Pierre Piccinin, who told Bel RTL radio that he knew for a fact that ''the Assad government did not use Sarin gas'' in the fatal August 21 attack on the outskirts of Damascus, because he overheard a conversation between his rebel captors taking responsibility for the attack.

    ''One day we overheard a Skype conversation in English between three people whose names I don't know, through a half-open door, from the room in which we were being held,'' Quirico wrote. ''One of them introduced himself as a Free Syrian Army general. There was a man with him I'd never seen before.

    They were talking to a third man on Skype, who was unknown to us. During that conversation they said the gas operation in Damascus was carried out by rebels as a provocation, to spark Western military intervention. They also said they thought the death toll was exaggerated''.

    ''I have no idea if any of this is true and nothing tells me that it is, because I have no way to confirm what was said, nor do I have any idea as to the identity or reliability of the people who were speaking,'' Quirico continued. ''I am absolutely not capable of saying whether the conversation was based on actual facts or if it was just hearsay. And it is not my habit to hold chatter heard through a door as true''.(ANSAmed).

    © Copyright ANSA - All rights reserved

    Business opportunities

    The information system of business
    opportunities abroad

    News from Mediterranean