Syria's Assad reappoints Halaqi as PM: state media

BEIRUT Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:10am EDT

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad speaks during an interview with Venezuelan state television TeleSUR in Damascus, in this handout photograph distributed by Syria's national news agency SANA on September 26, 2013.      REUTERS/SANA/Handout via Reuters

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad speaks during an interview with Venezuelan state television TeleSUR in Damascus, in this handout photograph distributed by Syria's national news agency SANA on September 26, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/SANA/Handout via Reuters

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BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has reappointed Wael al-Halaqi as prime minister, state media reported on Sunday.

Assad was sworn in for a new term as president last month, requiring the formation of a new government. Halaqi was appointed in 2012 after his predecessor, Riad Hijab, fled Syria to join the opposition.

State media reported that Assad had issued a decree requiring Halaqi to form the new government. Halaqi, who wields little power, survived a bomb attack on his convoy in Damascus in 2013.

Assad was sworn in for a new seven-year term on July 16 after winning a presidential election that affirmed his grip on power more than three years into the country's civil war.

(Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by Catherine Evans and Lynne O'Donnell)

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