Turkey declares elections in Syria illegitimate
ANKARA (Reuters) – Turkey said on Wednesday that the presidential election in Syria was illegitimate and that a United Nations campaign for a political solution to the decade of conflict in that country must continue.
The Syrian government said Wednesday’s vote, which could extend President Bashar al-Assad’s reign, shows the country is functioning normally despite the war that has killed hundreds of thousands and displaced 11 million people.
Turkey supports the rebels who tried to oust Assad and has led several cross-border offensives in Syria since 2016 against Kurdish militants and Syrian government forces. He also held talks with Russia and Iran, both of which back Damascus, for a political solution to the conflict.
“The elections organized today by the Syrian regime do not reflect the free will of the people and are illegitimate,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said, adding that the vote was “not taken under free conditions. and fair “.
The elections were held despite a UN-led peace process that called for polls under international supervision to pave the way for a new constitution and political settlement.
“It is important that the regime’s attempts to achieve artificial legitimacy through the election, the results of which are expected, are prevented and that the political process carried out under the auspices of the UN and the leadership and the Appropriation of the Syrians continues, ”said the ministry mentioned.
(Reporting by Tuvan Gumrukcu; Editing by Dominic Evans)