Conflict & Justice

Aleppo al-Rashid Mosque reportedly hit by 'Assad shelling'


Syrian civilians gather around the remains of an army tank in front of a bombed-out mosque in the northern town of Azaz, some 47km north of Aleppo, on August 23, 2012. Today, Sept. 5, 2012, unconfirmed footage showed the collapse of the minaret of Al-Rashid Mosque in Aleppo, reportedly stuck by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's forces. This allegation could not be confirmed.


Aris Messinis

The minaret of al-Rashid Mosque in Aleppo collapsed earlier today after it was hit by Syrian government shells, according to an anonymous journalist that goes by the name Amal Hanano.

GlobalPost could not confirm the news, which came via Amal Hanano's tweet.

Foreign Policy, which previously published articles by Hanano, says "Amal Hanano is a pseudonym for a Syrian-American writer." They say, "She has written extensively about the Syrian Revolution in Jadaliyya and the National.'"

Fighting near al-Rashid Mosque between Syrian rebels and Assad's forces was reported on Aug. 30, 2012, by what seems to be a pro-government website. In April 2012, Amnesty International reported a female student was shot in the back while demonstrating near al-Rashid Mosque.

The footage of the collapsed minaret was posted by alepposteam2012, and, though it's difficult to know for sure, it seems Hanano's Twitter feed was the first to allege the destruction was the fault of Assad's forces.

If true, the Syrian military could be targeting minarets because they provide a good tactical position for snipers.

If you know anything about this event, please leave a comment below.

Here's the video:

Here's more footage of what seems to be the same fallen minaret: