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Is Syria trying to attract tourists with a ‘Game of Thrones’ themed video?

Winter is coming and you are invited to visit Syria. That seems to be the latest message from the Syrian Ministry of Tourism in a "Game of Thrones" inspired video.

The video was released last week by the Syrian Ministry of Tourism on their Facebook page that seems to be in on the social media site since the start of the year but has yet to be verified by Facebook.

The one-minute long video footage starts with a Syrian flag billowing in the wind and takes you through the lush green sites, panoramic architecture and swimming pools across the Aleppo region in Syria with the theme tune of HBO's "Game of Thrones" – a dark fantasy drama about death, destruction, war and betrayal in order to conquer a throne.

A spokesperson from HBO told CNBC that "no permission was given or requested" for the use of the theme tune.

The video is apparently aimed at attracting tourists to the Aleppo region of Syria – a region that is currently struggling to cope with the short-lived ceasefire between the government and rebel forces who want Assad removed from power. The UN says the attacks on Aleppo have left nearly two million people without water and some 275,000 people are believed to be trapped in the rebel-held eastern area of the city alone.


An elderly Syrian man and a child walk amidst debris in a residential block reportedly hit by an explosives-filled barrel dropped by a government forces helicopter.
Baraa Al-Halabi | AFP | Getty Images
An elderly Syrian man and a child walk amidst debris in a residential block reportedly hit by an explosives-filled barrel dropped by a government forces helicopter.

While the purported tourism video tries to lure tourists to the region to enjoy the beauty of Syria, governments across the world have issued strong travel advisory on Syria.

"The Department of State continues to warn U.S. citizens against all travel to Syria and strongly recommends that U.S. citizens remaining in Syria depart immediately," the U.S. Passports & International Travel department said on its website. The advisory also said that no part of Syria should be considered safe from violence.

"The potential for hostile acts exists throughout the country, including kidnappings and the use of chemical warfare against civilians. Shelling and aerial bombardment, including of densely populated urban areas, have significantly raised the risk of death or serious injury."

The British government has a similar advice for its citizens. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) of the U.K. has advised against all travel to Syria.

"British nationals in Syria should leave now by any practical means. The FCO is not able to provide consular services, and won't be able to help your evacuation from the country," the U.K. government website noted.


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