A presenter from Al Dounia channel, Syrian regime’s main T.V. channel, defected to the opposition and has been aiding the rebel groups by providing confidential information for the last seven months.
Ghatan Sleiba, a long-time anchor and reporter, is believed to be the first high-profile defector, "I am the first and I will probably be the last," he said in an interview with the Guardian in southern Turkey.
"There are some others who also want to run, but there are more who love the regime from the depths of their hearts," he said.
Sleiba was held in Syria until last week trying to help the revolutionaries but is in Turkey now.
"This is one of the things that they never wanted us to talk about. What we were doing was not reporting. It was simply acting as the tongue of the regime,” he said to the Guardian.
Sleiba revealed that the interviews telecasted on TV were staged as he would provide his interviewees with the answers beforehand.
"Those answers and the subjects of things to talk about were given to us by the head of the Ba'ath party in the area, or by the political security division."
Last November he contacted the Free Syria Army, requesting them to help him escape from Syria .
"They told me that I was more use to them if I stayed in my job. And so from then on we talked on Skype and I told them what I could about regime and military movements."
After being able to move out of Syria safely, Sleiba is now hoping to find a job with the opposition news channels but is faced with suspicion.
"When I got here, I met a guy from al-Jazeera and he said I was a government spy with a psychological problem. But people will soon learn that the truth is a powerful thing and that is why I am here."
Source: The Guardian