Syrian President Assad sworn in for third term

Syrian President Bashar Assad has been sworn in, marking the beginning of his third seven-year term in office, AP reports.

Assad placed his hand on Islam’s holy book, the Quran, pledging to honor the country’s constitution in front of a large audience of parliament members and Muslim and Christian clergymen.

Assad was re-elected last month in a landslide victory amid a civil war in a vote dismissed by the opposition and its Western allies as a sham.

He won 88.7 percent of the ballots cast in the first multicandidate elections in decades. The voting didn’t take place in areas engulfed in fighting.

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