Luna Al-Shibl’s Death Shrouded in Controversy and Family Discord

Credit: (Sham FM)

Luna Al-Shibl, a prominent advisor to Bashar al-Assad, passed away on Friday following a traffic accident. Al-Shibl’s death has sparked speculation and revealed deep family disputes, raising questions about the circumstances leading to her demise and subsequent burial.

Al-Shibl’s family refused to receive her body for burial in her hometown in Suwayda, citing long-standing disagreements. Consequently, the Syrian regime decided to bury her in the Al-Dahdah cemetery in Damascus. According to sources close to the family, Al-Shibl’s father, retired Brigadier General Adel Asaad Al-Shibl, had disowned her before his death due to familial conflicts.

The discord traces back decades to when Al-Shibl’s parents separated, leading her mother to relocate to Egypt with Luna and her brother, Mulham. After returning to Syria, Luna Al-Shibl distanced herself from her brothers in Suwayda. The rift deepened during the Syrian revolution in 2011 when her brother, Asaad, participated in anti-regime demonstrations, prompting threats from Luna and resulting in the family’s disavowal of her.

The funeral announcement, circulated by pro-regime pages, indicated a brief service held at Al-Shami Hospital in Damascus, with burial at Al-Dahdah cemetery. Notably, the condolence period was restricted to two hours on Sunday, from 6 PM to 8 PM. The regime’s media outlets did not specify whether an official procession would occur, a departure from customary practices for officials of Al-Shibl’s stature.

The funeral was notably low-key, lacking official presence and media coverage. The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) noted that Syrian TV presenters did not wear black in mourning, and no funeral videos were broadcast. Major regime-affiliated media, including SANA and the newspapers Tishreen and Al-Baath, did not publish any reports on the funeral, underscoring the unusual silence surrounding Al-Shibl’s death.

Al-Shibl reportedly died from a severe cerebral hemorrhage following a collision on the Damascus-Yafour Highway. However, analysts and journalists have cast doubt on the regime’s narrative, pointing to the location’s heavy monitoring by the Fourth Division, led by Bashar al-Assad’s brother, Maher al-Assad. Some sources suggest the accident may have been a planned assassination.

On the day of her death, armed groups, believed to be affiliated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, imposed a security cordon near Al-Shami Hospital, restricting access, including to her own husband, Ammar Saati. Her accident followed Al-Shibl’s exclusion from the Baath Party’s Central Committee and the arrest of her brother Mulham and his wife on espionage charges.

Luna Al-Shibl’s prominence grew during the Syrian revolution, serving as Bashar al-Assad’s media advisor. Her career included a seven-year stint at Al Jazeera before returning to Syria in 2010. She represented the regime at the Geneva II conference in 2014, where her demeanor drew criticism. Al-Shibl faced sanctions from the US Treasury Department due to her close ties to the Assad regime.

The mysterious circumstances surrounding Luna Al-Shibl’s death and the discord with her family have added another layer of complexity to the already intricate Syrian political landscape. As the regime continues to grapple with internal and external challenges, the true nature of Al-Shibl’s demise remains a subject of intense speculation and intrigue.


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