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95 pct of registered overseas Syrians vote in presidential elections

English.news.cn   2014-06-01 06:13:58

DAMASCUS, May 31 (Xinhua) -- Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad said on Saturday that more than 95 percent of registered overseas Syrians have voted in the presidential elections at the Syrian embassies abroad, according to the state Syrian TV.

Mekdad said he had received the balloting results from the Syrian embassies abroad, adding that the results have been sent to the Supreme Judicial Court, which would keep the results undisclosed until the end of the domestic vote slated for June 3.

The overseas balloting kicked off on Wednesday at the Syrian embassies and consulates abroad and lasted for only one day, except for Lebanon, where the Syrian embassy extended the vote for an extra day, citing the high turnout.

Mekdad said the overseas balloting has mirrored high awareness of the Syrians and their belief in their country.

The number of eligible voters in and outside Syria has exceeded 15 million and the Interior Ministry said it had undertaken all necessary procedures and made all possible efforts to secure the voting in Syria.

Electoral campaigns started on May 11 and would end 24 hours ahead of the voting next Tuesday.

The three candidates -- incumbent President Bashar al-Assad, former minister Hassan al-Nouri and lawmaker Maher Hajjar -- have already put forth their electoral platforms that carry nearly the same political headlines with different visions on how to rescue the collapsed economy.

The election will be the first to be held in half a century. Previously, there were only referendums to support Assad or his late father Hafez al-Assad who was in office from 1971 to 2000.

In 2007, the junior Assad won another seven years in office with 97 percent of the vote in a nationwide referendum on his leadership in which he was the only candidate.

The Syrian opposition and Western powers have dismissed the 2014 voting as a farce. Most of the European countries and many Arab countries said they would not allow the voting process to be carried out on their territories.

Editor: Mu Xuequan
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