The New York Times (NYT) has disseminated a fake news story that the Greek government was 'holding illegal migrants who crossed the border from Turkey at a secret “black site” where they are being abused or denied due process.'
The NYT article titled 'We Are Like Animals': Inside Greece's Secret Site for Migrants,' has been dismissed by the Greek government.
“There is no secret detention centre in Greece,” government spokesman Stelios Petsas told reporters, adding that if an international newspaper knew about the site, it wasn’t secret. "All issues related to guarding the borders or issues of security are transparent. The constitution is being applied… and there is nothing secret."
In its article, The New York Times quoted illegal migrants who said they had been captured by Greek security forces, stripped, beaten and held in a complex of buildings near the border.
One of the accounts in the 'sourced' reports comes from 23-year-old illegal migrant Somar al-Hussein, who entered Greece and managed to record his "secret" geographic coordinates without a phone.
The so-called "black site" is located at the village of Poros (latitude 40 ° 53'54.6 "N 26 ° 13'27.1" E).
However, a social media search has proved that the "Syrian refugee student software engineer, Somar al-Hussein," is none other than Somar ElHüseyin, an Istanbul resident & a Software Engineering student at Maltepe University.
This amongst other 'fake news' claims in the news piece, can only be described as a hit piece on Greece.
In response, the Hellenic American leadership Council (HALC) have launched a letter-writing campaign, urging everyone around the world to write a letter to the editor of The New York Times to report news truthfully and in a balanced and fair way.
"Unfortunately, this "investigative" piece fails to give the full context of the crisis at Greece's border; it does not detail Turkey’s motivation for precipitating this crisis – namely to blackmail the EU into supporting Turkey’s military operations in Syria; it disingenuously tries to paint a picture of Syrian refugees fleeing to the Greek border in fear of their safety or their lives without mentioning that the United Nations has reported no refugee movement from Idlib to Turkey as a result of the last bout of fighting; and fails to challenge Turkish propaganda and talking points," the statement from HALC states.
You can sign it here.
The New York Times is an embarrassment to journalism. They were a dead paper before I went into politics, and they will be a dead paper after I leave, which will be in 5 years. Fake News is the Enemy of the people!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 8, 2020