Rouhani Congratulates Assad on His Re-Election as Syrian President

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani has felicitated his Syrian counterpart Bashar al-Assad on his re-election as the Arab country’s president.

In a Friday message, Rouhani described the widespread turnout of the Syrian people at the ballot box as an important step in determining the future and prosperity of Syria.

He also sincerely congratulated Assad on the successful holding of the elections, and said the Syrian voters made a “decisive choice”.

“I am confident that in the new chapter of Syria’s political life, we will see the development of cooperation between the two friendly and brotherly countries,” he added.

He finally wished health and success for Assad and dignity and felicity for the people of Syria.

Assad was re-elected in a landslide, officials said Thursday, ushering in a fourth seven-year term in the war-torn country.

Officials said 18 million were eligible to vote. But in the country ravaged by the 10-year-old conflict, areas controlled by militants or Kurdish-led troops did not hold the vote. 

At least 8 million, mostly displaced, live in those areas in northwest and northeast Syria. Over 5 million refugees — mostly living in neighbouring countries — have largely refrained from casting their ballots.

Syria’s parliament speaker, Hammoud Sabbagh, announced the final results from Wednesday’s vote. He said Assad garnered 95.1% of the votes. He said turnout stood at 78.6% of the voters, in an election that lasted for 17 hours on Wednesday with no independent monitors.

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