DAMASCUS: A total of 24 Syrians have registered to run in next month’s presidential election, including incumbent President Bashar Al Assad, the Supreme Constitutional Court announced yesterday as the application deadline expired.
The vote, scheduled for June 3, is expected to return to power Assad, the embattled president who has faced a three-year-old armed revolt. But there has been no shortage of would-be challengers. The court will now spend five days examining the 24 hopefuls to see if they meet electoral criteria to run for office in Syria’s first multi-candidate presidential vote.
A maximum of three candidates are expected to figure on the final list. Court head Adnan Zureiq said the results would be announced within five days.
To add their name on the ballot, candidates must win approval from at least 35 of parliament’s 250 lawmakers, as well as meet criteria including having lived in Syria for the past decade. The rules effectively ruled out the participation of the country’s leading opposition figures, who are in exile. AFP