Emails seen by The Daily Telegraph show that Walters tried to help Sheherazad Jaafari, the daughter of Syria’s UN ambassador, secure a place at an Ivy League university and an internship with Piers Morgan’s CNN programme.
When confronted with the emails, which were obtained by a Syrian opposition group, the 82-year-old ABC broadcaster admitted a conflict of interest and expressed “regret” for her actions.
Miss Jaafari, 22, was a close adviser to Mr Assad and was at his side as Syrian troops stepped up their campaign of killing and repression. She would speak to him several times a day, sometimes calling him “the Dude” in her adopted American accent, and was sometimes the only official in the room when he did interviews with Western journalists.
Miss Jaafari, whose father Bashar Jaafari has known Walters for around seven years, began dealing with the broadcaster late last year as ABC News lobbied for an interview with Mr Assad.
Walters’s interview in December – the first with an American television network – made headlines around the world as Mr Assad denied he was responsible for the crackdown which had already resulted in thousands of deaths in Syria. The emails show that, after the interview, Miss Jaafari and Walters stayed in close contact.
Read More at the Telegraph. By Raf Sanchez.