Assad issues decree, setting May 7 for parliamentary elections
Here’s an excerpt from Al Arabiya:
Syria’s embattled President Bashar al-Assad issued a decree on Tuesday setting May 7 as the date for parliamentary elections, the state news agency SANA reported.
The announcement came after international mediator Kofi Annan said he would be expecting a response from the embattled Syrian regime on proposals he presented in an effort to halt a year of bloodshed.
“I am expecting to hear from Syrian authorities today since I left some concrete proposals for them to consider,” the United Nations-Arab League envoy had told reporters in Ankara after meeting with the Syrian opposition.
“The Syrian people have gone a lot and they deserve better,” Annan added.
The vote, seen as a response from Assad to Annan’s initiative, forms part of a raft of reforms announced by Assad in a bid to calm a year-long uprising against his regime that began with democracy protests.
The elections would be the third time a legislative vote has taken place in Syria since Assad came to power in 2000.