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Pictures | Wed Jul 16, 2014 | 4:15pm EDT

Confident Assad launches new term in stronger position

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad places his right hand on a Koran as he is sworn in for a new seven-year term, at al-Shaab presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014, in this picture released by Syria's national news agency SANA. REUTERS/SANA/Handout via Reuters

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad places his right hand on a Koran as he is sworn in for a new seven-year term, at al-Shaab presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014, in this picture released by Syria's national news agency SANA....more

Syria's President Bashar al-Assad places his right hand on a Koran as he is sworn in for a new seven-year term, at al-Shaab presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014, in this picture released by Syria's national news agency SANA. REUTERS/SANA/Handout via Reuters
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A still image taken from video shows Syria's President Bashar al-Assad arriving to be sworn in for a new seven-year term at the presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014.  REUTERS/Syria TV via Reuters TV

A still image taken from video shows Syria's President Bashar al-Assad arriving to be sworn in for a new seven-year term at the presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Syria TV via Reuters TV

A still image taken from video shows Syria's President Bashar al-Assad arriving to be sworn in for a new seven-year term at the presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Syria TV via Reuters TV
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A still image taken from video shows Syria's President Bashar al-Assad arriving to be sworn in for a new seven-year term at the presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Syria TV via Reuters TV

A still image taken from video shows Syria's President Bashar al-Assad arriving to be sworn in for a new seven-year term at the presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Syria TV via Reuters TV

A still image taken from video shows Syria's President Bashar al-Assad arriving to be sworn in for a new seven-year term at the presidential palace in Damascus July 16, 2014. REUTERS/Syria TV via Reuters TV
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