Advisor to the head of the Syrian regime, Luna al-Shibl, launched accusations of corruption for both former ministers of industry and internal trade in the regime’s government, stressing that they will be held accountable.
“According to Shibl’s posts on its Telegram channel, Industry Minister Ziad Sabbagh was dismissed from his post due to his involvement in corruption cases, as revealed by the final results of the investigations conducted by the Central Authority for Control and Inspection.”
Shibl referred to a publication released in February, which exposed the embezzlement of public funds in Homs’ cotton gins, amounting to nine billion Syrian pounds. This resulted in the arrest of several individuals, and the investigation subsequently expanded to include multiple managers in the Ministry of Industry at the time. Eventually, it was discovered that the Minister of Industry was also involved in the corruption.
Shibl has stated that former Minister of Internal Trade in the regime government, Amr Salem, and his associates were found to have been involved in suspicious deals with the salaries of the Republican Guard Bassel Shabani. As a result, the decision to dismiss Salem was accompanied by a directive to hold him accountable for his actions.
In previous meetings, Shibl had hinted at the existence of corruption cases that would be revealed. However, despite these claims, no corruption case was publicly addressed or resulted in the arrest and accountability of those responsible.
On Wednesday, March 29th, Bashar al-Assad issued a decree for a partial cabinet reshuffle within his government, which included the appointment of 5 new ministers. Firas Hassan Kaddour was appointed as the new Minister of Oil and Mineral Resources, replacing Bassam Tohme. Mohsen Abdel Karim Ali was appointed as the new Minister of Internal Trade and Consumer Protection, replacing Amr Salem. Abdul Qader Jokhadar was appointed as the new Minister of Industry, replacing Ziad Sabbagh. Louay Imad Al-Din Al-Munajjid was appointed as the new Minister of Social Affairs and Labor, replacing Muhammad Saif Al-Din. Additionally, Muhammad Fayez Al-Barsha was named as the new Minister of State, while Ahmed Postehchi was appointed to replace him. This information was reported by SANA.
Even before assuming his duties, the new Minister of Internal Trade, Mohsen Abdul Karim Ali, faced accusations of being involved in the black market for state cement as its official sponsor. Ali, who is the brother of the former regime’s ambassador to Lebanon, Ali Abdul Karim Ali, was alleged to have a monthly share of one billion Syrian pounds from the illegal activities. These accusations have made him the richest government official, considering he had previously held several positions in the state before becoming a minister.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.