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Bashar al-Assad wins fourth term in predictable landslide; US, Europe question legitimacy-World News , Firstpost

Bashar al-Assad wins fourth term in predictable landslide; US, Europe question legitimacy-World News , Firstpost
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Bashar al-Assad wins fourth term in predictable landslide; US, Europe question legitimacy-World News , Firstpost

Bashar al-Assad wins fourth term in predictable landslide; US, Europe question legitimacy-World News , Firstpost

Areas managed by rebels or Kurdish-led troops, housing over 8 million folks, didn’t vote, whereas over 5 million refugees had been largely shunned casting their ballots in the election

Syria presidential Election: Bashar al-Assad wins fourth term in predictable landslide; US, Europe question legitimacy

Syrian President Bashar Assad supporters maintain up nationwide flags and footage of Assad as they rejoice at Omayyad Sq. in Damascus. AP

Damascus: Syrian President Bashar Assad was re-elected in a landslide, officers stated Thursday, ushering in a fourth seven-year term in the war-torn nation following an election described as illegitimate and a sham by the West and his opposition.

Assad’s win was not in doubt, in an election the place officers stated 18 million had been eligible to vote. However in the nation ravaged by the 10-year-old battle, areas managed by rebels or Kurdish-led troops didn’t maintain the vote. Not less than 8 million, principally displaced, stay in these areas in northwest and northeast Syria. Over 5 million refugees — principally residing in neighboring nations — have largely shunned casting their ballots.

US and European officers have additionally questioned the legitimacy of the election, saying it violates UN resolutions in place to resolve the battle, lacks any worldwide monitoring, and is unrepresentative of all Syrians.

Syria’s parliament speaker, Hammoud Sabbagh, introduced the ultimate outcomes from Wednesday’s vote. He stated Assad garnered 95.1 p.c of the votes. He stated turnout stood at 78.6 p.c of the voters, in an election that lasted for 17 hours on Wednesday with no impartial displays.

Assad was dealing with symbolic competitors from two candidates — a former minister and a former opposition determine.

Assad’s victory comes because the nation continues to be devastated by the battle. Combating has subsided however the struggle isn’t over. An financial disaster is getting worse in a rustic the place over 80 p.c of the inhabitants lives beneath the poverty line and the native forex is in a free fall.

Assad, shut associates and authorities officers are dealing with widening Western sanctions, added to already current ones which have escalated because the struggle unfolded. European and US governments blame Assad and his aides many of the struggle’s atrocities.

Damascus erupted in celebrations, with gunfire and fireworks lighting the evening sky. Hundreds gathered in main squares in Damascus, and the coastal metropolis of Tartus, dancing whereas waving flags and footage of Assad. They chanted, “With our soul, blood, we defend you Bashar,” and “We solely select three: God, Syria and Bashar.”

A big stage was set in the capital’s Omayyad Sq., with audio system blaring nationwide songs. One singer appeared on a stage arrange in a Tartus sq., dressed in the flag of Syria. Nearly nobody was sporting a face masks, although Syria is dealing with a surge of coronavirus circumstances.

The election is prone to supply little change to circumstances in Syria. Whereas Assad and his allies, Russia and Iran, could also be looking for a brand new seal of legitimacy for the president in workplace since 2000, his re-election is prone to deepen the rift with the West, driving him nearer to Russian and Iranian backers in addition to China.

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