Syrians express opposition to Russian plan to end conflict
A Russian proposal to end Syria's conflict that would include early presidential elections faced opposition from both sides yesterday, as deep divisions remained over the fate of President Bashar Assad.
Syrian legislator Sharif Shehadeh, a member of the ruling Baath party, told the Associated Press that there will be no presidential vote before Assad's latest term ends in 2021. He added that parliamentary elections are an internal Syrian affair and that it was still too early to hold them.
His comments came a day after Russia circulated a document on ending Syria's conflict that calls for drafting a new constitution in up to 18 months. The charter would be put to a popular referendum and followed by an early presidential election.
Shehadeh said the proposal is not yet official.