Referendum on Assad’s Presidency Early July

Published June 18th, 2000 - 02:00 GMT

Damascus – 


Referendum on the candidacy of the late Syrian president’s son, Bashar, will be conducted in the first week of July, according to sources participating in the 9th Baath Regional Command Congress. 

According to the Syrian constitution, referendum should be carried out in a period not exceeding 90 days after the death of the president.  

The People’s Assembly, the name for Syria’s parliament, will meet on June 25th to vote on Assad’s candidacy, before popular approval is sought through the referendum. 

Bashar, who is to be elected as new secretary general of the ruling party at the three-day congress, was also promoted to the rank of general and assumed army leadership shortly after his father Hafez Assad died June on 10th. 

Meanwhile, partisan sources, who preferred anonymity, told that that “injecting new bloods into the ruling party,” does not mean that veteran politicians will be eliminated on the criterion of age. 

They added that Abdul Halim Khaddam, caretaker president and companion of the late Assad throughout his career as president, and Mustafa Tlas, defense minister, have appeared so active during the congress sessions, which opened Saturday. 

According to the same sources, Tlas seems to be closer to Bashar than the rest of the Old Guards.  

The new regional command of Baath will be announced in two days, said the sources. 


© 2000 Al Bawaba (

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