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Expelled priest sided with terrorists, Syrian government claims

Catholic World News - September 21, 2012

Syria’s government has charged that a Jesuit priest who was expelled from the country in June was sympathetic toward Al Qaida terrorists.

The state news agency SAN said that Father Paolo Dall’Oglio, an Italian missionary who had lived for over 30 years in Syria, “took part in the media disinformation campaign against Syria.” The government linked the priest, who had shown his support for rebel groups, with terrorist groups including Al Qaida. The Syrian foreign ministry said that Father Dall’Oglio showed his support for terrorists by supporting a proposal for the imposition of a “no-fly zone” in Syria, “thus aligning himself with the enemies.” The government’s claim that a priest was allied with the rebels, and even with the terrorist groups who have been reportedly active within the rebel movement, contrasts with the rebels’ frequent complaints that Church authorities in Syria have sided with the Assad regime.

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