Thursday, June 5, 2014

Assad claims landslide election win in Syria

Syrian soldiers celebrate Bashar Assad's presidential re-election in Damascus, Syria, Wednesday, June 4, 2014. (AP / Dusan Vranic)
Syrian President Bashar Assad has been re-elected in a landslide, officials said Wednesday, capturing another seven-year term in the middle of a bloody 3-year-old uprising against his rule that has devastated the country.

Syria's parliament speaker, Jihad Laham, announced the final results from Tuesday's election, saying Assad garnered 10,319,723 votes, or 88.7 per cent. Assad's two challengers, Hassan al-Nouri and Maher Hajjar, won 4.3 per cent and 3.2 per cent respectively. The Supreme constitutional Court put turnout at 73.42 per cent.

Assad's victory was always a foregone conclusion, despite the presence of other candidates on the ballot for the first time in decades. The opposition and its Western allies denounced the election as a farce, with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry calling it a "great big zero."


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