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Syrian President Assad to run for third term

Bashar Al-Assad will run in the June 3 election, seeking a third term as Syrian president, it was announced Monday.

By Ed Adamczyk
Syrian President Assad to run for third term
In this photo released by Syria's national news agency, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad visits the Christain town of Maaloua, northeast of Damascus, in Syria on April 20, 2014. The Syrian leader visited the recaptured town of Maaloula on Easter Sunday as he seeks to persuade minorities that the government is their best protection against hardline Islamists. Assad has since announced he will seek a third term in the June 3 presidential election. (UPI) | License Photo

DAMASCUS, Syria, April 28 (UPI) -- President Bashar Al-Assad will seek a third term as president of Syria in the June 3 election, the speaker of the Syrian Parliament announced Monday.

Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Lahham added four more candidates would contest the election, bringing the total to seven. Assad’s plan to run was not a surprise; he is expected to win, despite a violent, three-year uprising against his administration, against five relatively unknown candidates. It remains to be seen if this war-torn country, with over a million refugees already escaped, can support a successful election.

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Sawsan Haddad, Samir Mala, Mohammed Firas Rajjuh, Abdel-Salam Salameh, Hassan Abdullah al-Nuri and Maher al-Hajjar are Al-Assad’s opponents.

Across Syria Sunday, unrest continued. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, headquartered in London, reported a mortar attack by rebels killed at least 21 people in Aleppo. It also reported the explosion of a building, housing government troops, in the Old City section of Aleppo, as well as government air raids which killed at least six people.

In Wadi Suwab, in eastern Syria, Iraqi helicopters crossed the border to strike a jihadist convoy, killing at least eight, a spokesman for the Iraqi Interior ministry said.

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