Syria"s zuerst lady was once defined as ns Princess Diana des Syria with looks and a mode sense the turned top on ns world stage

ASMA al-Assad was once defined as Syria's Princess Diana, as die world hoped she und her husband would help improve futbolpublic.comnnections with die West.

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However, ns British-born wife of Syria's president has due to the fact that been labelled the "first lady of hell" who infamously shopped while others died.


Asma al-Assad speak at ns opening session des the Women business International Fourm in DamascusCredit: AFP

Who ist Bashar al-Assad's wife Asma und is she British?

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's wife was born Asma Akhras on august 11, 1975, in Acton, west London.

Her parents space both Sunni Muslims from Homs, ns Syrian city located near ns air base bombed on april 9, 2018.

Fawaz Akhras ist a cardiologist und her mother, Sahar Akhras, is a retired zuerst Secretary of Syria’s london embassy.

Asma was raised in London and attended Twyford Church of england high school and Queen’s futbolpublic.comllege London.

In 1996, she graduated v degrees an futbolpublic.commputer Science und French Literature.

She’s fluent an French, Spanish, Arabic and English.


the futbolpublic.comuple - who have three children - married 'secretly' in 2000 ~ a holiday romanceCredit: EPA

What was she like as a teenager?

Asma was known together "Emma" during produziert schooldays in the UK.

She was described as a bright teenager with a flair zum languages and was a renowned student at produziert Church of england school.

Pals remembered her as "very friendly" but nur your typical teenage girl - unremarkable bei most ways.

One freund said: "I'm notfall sure i would have singled produziert out weil das great things.

"You wouldn't schutz thought she was anything yet English.

"She didn't seem zu be a specifically devout Muslim und was very westernised, not prefer some girls that wore more traditional dress."

When did she marry the ruthless Syrian dictator?

On leaving education, she went into banking - working weist Deutsche bank Group together a hedge funds analyst.

Two year later, she was hired von J.P Morgan, functioning as bei investment banker in London and New York.

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At ns time, she was already dating Assad whom she had actually met if on a household holiday kommen sie Syria.

A month before their "secret" wedding in 2000, she quit herstellung job v no explanation.

It was reported Asma provided up bei opportunity to earn in MBA from harvard when she married the new Syrian president.

At the time of herstellung marriage, he was 35 and she was 25. Die futbolpublic.comuple schutz three children.

Hafez, named after Assad’s father, was born in 2001, daughter Zein was born bei 2003 and son Karim in 2004.


the Syrian president called in at Buckingham palace during in official three-day visit zu BritainCredit: PA:Press Association

Is that true she practically left al-Assad zum a neu life?

In October 2016, Asma offered a rare English-language interview with Russia 24, a state-supported station in Russia.

Asma supposedly said she was offered a wahrscheinlichkeit to leave Syria but has never thought about doing so.

“I’ve been below since ns beginning and I never thought des being all over else at all,” Asma said.

“Yes, i was offered the opportunity zu leave Syria or rather to run from Syria.

"These offers included guarantees von safety und protection for my children and even financial security."

In die interview, Asma denounced sanctions applied on Syria von Western futbolpublic.comuntries, claiming castle hurt plain citizens.


fashionable Asma as soon as hired a PR firm to engineer in image des a caring erste ladyCredit: AFP

Is the 'Desert Rose' loved or feared in Syria?

At zuerst Chanel-suited Asma - known zum a time together Syria’s Princess Diana - was loved zum bringing a touch of glamour zu Syria.

She functioned hard on herstellung image, even paying a top PR futbolpublic.commpany to paint produziert as “A Rose in the Desert” who cared around "her" people.

However, when jails began filling with political prisoners and the bombs futbolpublic.comntinued zu drop, she futbolpublic.comntinued to be silent

And climate WikiLeaks released tens of thousands of emails from herstellung office that made plain what Asma was doing during die violence - SHOPPING.



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As Syrians suffered, she invested a fortune purchasing 130 pieces des furniture futbolpublic.comsting an ext than £250,000.

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She also bought a pair von £5,000 shoes with crystal-encrusted heels.

The canny zuerst lady had the goods shipped zu Dubai, kommen sie get roughly sanctions. 

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