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Assad sets the next legislative elections on April 13

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has decided on Tuesday that the next legislative elections will be held on April 13, in a benefit that comes after his forces managed to regain control of large areas of the war-torn country nine years ago.

Al-Assad issued, according to the official Syrian news agency, “SANA,” a decree that “determines Monday, 13 April 2020, the date for the election of members of the People’s Assembly,” specifying the number of seats allocated to the fourteen provinces in the country.

The People’s Assembly includes 250 seats, distributed roughly equally between the workers and peasants sectors (127 seats) on the one hand, and the rest of the popular groups (123) on the other hand.

The upcoming elections are the third since the outbreak of the conflict in mid-March 2011. Under the constitution, the government prepares by virtue of the resigned when a new people’s assembly is elected, and continues to conduct business pending the issuance of a decree naming the new government.

The last legislative elections were held in 2016, in which about 3,500 candidates competed and the ruling Baath Party and its allies won a majority of seats.

In the 2012 elections, the first after the outbreak of the conflict, the door to candidacy was opened for the first time in front of candidates from parties outside the Baath Party, in what was considered an attempt by the authorities to contain the protest movement against it, which quickly turned into a bloody conflict that multiplied, and resulted in the killing of more than 380,000 Persons, the displacement of millions and massive destruction in infrastructure.

The elections come after the government forces now control more than seventy percent of the country’s area, as they have made great progress on several fronts against the opposition factions on the one hand and the Islamic State on the other hand, thanks to Russian military intervention since 2015.

Damascus has been deploying its forces since October in the Kurdish rebel-held areas in the northeast of the country, at the request of the Kurds, which followed a large-scale attack by Ankara in the area, under which it controlled a broad border strip at a depth of thirty kilometers.

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