Press Statements

Indian Muslim Mushawarat rejects the Syrian ambassador’s claims

Calls upon the Indian government to take notice and demand proof

New Delhi, 5 September 2013:  The All India Muslim Majlis-e Mushawarat, the umbrella body of Indian Muslim organisations, rubbished the claims made by the Syrian envoy in India as carried by a Delhi-based newspaper today that Indian Muslims are fighting alongside rebels in Syria.

AIMMM President Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan said that the Syrian ambassador has failed to offer any proof or names of any “Indian Muslims” who he claims are fighting in his country. Dr Khan rejected the lame excuse put forward by the ambassador that proof could not be presented to the Indian government because no Indian high level official has visited Syria recently.  Dr Khan said the Indian mission in Damascus is functioning while the Syrian embassy too is working here in New Delhi and these are the normal channels for governments to deliver and receive any information or complaint. Dr Khan said the Syrian ambassador is in New Delhi precisely for this purpose in which he has clearly failed and has, instead, misused his diplomatic office to approach a newspaper to air his unfounded allegations which were earlier, again in vague terms, parroted by a visiting Syrian minister last March. The Mushawarat had taken notice of that statement at the time and had demanded the Syrian authorities to offer proof if they have any.

Dr Khan added that the Syrian ambassador in Ukraine made a similar allegation that citizens of that country are fighting alongside the Syrian rebels. The Ukrainian government at once took notice of that claim, rubbished it and demanded proof which the Syrian ambassador has failed to provide. Dr Khan said our government too should take a serious note of this insinuation and meddling in our internal affairs and should ask the ambassador to furnish proof of what he has claimed. Dr Khan asked the Minister of External Affairs to teach a lesson or two to this envoy about how a foreign ambassador should behave on foreign soil.

Dr Khan added that, according to his information, a British national of Indian origin, a certain Dr Abbas Khan who is an orthopaedic surgeon, has been caught by the Syrian authorities when it overran a rebel-held area a few months ago. This surgeon was offering humanitarian aid to the injured but he has been branded as a foreign fighter by the Syrian regime. 

Issue at New Delhi on 5 September 2013 by
[Umbrella body of the Indian Muslim organisations]
D-250, Abul Fazal Enclave, Jamia Nagar, New Delhi-110025  India
Tel.: 011-26946780  Fax: 011-26947346

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