Syria’s Assad wins a fourth term in a predictable landslide

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DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syrian officials say President Bashar Assad has been re-elected for a fourth seven-year term in the war-torn country, following an election described as illegitimate and a sham by the West and his opposition. Assad’s win on Thursday was not in doubt, in an election where officials said 18 million were eligible to vote. But in the country torn by a 10-year-old conflict, areas controlled by rebels or Kurdish-led troops, where at least 8 million live, were not voting. Over 5 million refugees, mostly living in neighboring countries, have largely refrained from casting their ballots. U.S. and European officials have questioned the legitimacy of the election.

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