The German Federal Intelligence Service (BND) has revealed that al-Qaeda is responsible for numerous terrorist attacks in Syria, including the Houla massacre.
The BND estimates that al-Qaeda has carried out “about 90 terrorist attacks” in Syria between late last December and early July, German daily Die Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
wrote in an article on July 16.
The revelation was made public by the German government in response to a parliamentary question.
The German government also confirmed that it had received numerous reports from the BND on al-Qaeda’s involvement in the May 25 massacre in the Syrian town of Houla in the central province of Homs, in which 108 people, including dozens of children and women, were killed execution-style.
However, the German government stated that the reports were supposed to remain classified "by reason of national interest."
The West and the Syrian opposition blamed the Syrian government for the carnage, but a Syrian government-appointed fact-finding mission had said that armed groups had carried out the massacre to frame the government and foment sectarian strife.
The intelligence reports raise several questions about the terrorist nature of the self-proclaimed Free Syrian Army, and even more so about the fact that many of the armed terrorists, killed in clashes with Syrian security forces, carried foreign passports.
On Thursday, The New York Times published an article, stating that “the evidence is mounting that Syria has become a magnet for Sunni extremists, including those operating under the banner of al-Qaeda.”
Syria has been the scene of violence by armed groups since March 2011. The violence has claimed the lives of hundreds of people, including many security forces.
Damascus blames “outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorist groups” for the unrest, asserting that it is being orchestrated from abroad. The West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing the protesters.
Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and most western countries have supported and funded the violence in Syria by providing logistics, arms, and intelligence to anti-government elements.