` Syrian One-Sided Presidential Election Starts Amid Cries from Critics of it Being a Sham ‘

#AceWorldNews – DAMASCUS (SANA)- Presidential candidate Dr. Bashar al-Assad cast a vote Tuesday morning at Martyr Ma’asarani School polling centre in Damascus.

(BBC) – President Bashar al-Assad is widely expected to win a third seven-year term in office.

As Syria’s presidential election candidates started their campaign in the country, critics of the Syrian government have denounced the election as a sham.

The event comes after Supreme Constitutional Court issued the final list of candidates on May 10.

Maher Abdul-Hafiz Hajjar, lawmaker from Aleppo, Hassan Abdullah al-Nouri, lawmaker from Damascus, and Bashar Hafez al-Assad, incumbent president, are three candidates for June’s presidential election.

(Posters of candidates and their slogans are also visible all around the capital, Damascus)

(PressTV) – Under the Syrian law, each candidate needs to secure the support of 35 lawmakers in the 254-member parliament as each MP is allowed to back one candidate.

The vote must take place between 60 and 90 days before President Assad’s seven-year term comes to an end on July 17.

Damascus has insisted that it would hold the vote despite the foreign-backed militancy that has plagued the Arab country for more than three years.

Last month, Syria dismissed Western and opposition accusations regarding the presidential election, saying that it is planning to hold a free and transparent vote.

Syria has been gripped by deadly violence since March 2011.

Over 150,000 people have reportedly been killed and millions displaced due to the violence fuelled by the foreign-backed militants.

Press TV – Reuters – SANA – BBC News


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