November 11, 2019 / 7:26 AM / a month ago

Syria's Assad: anybody will be able to run at 2021 election

FILE PHOTO: Syria's President Bashar al-Assad speaks during a meeting with heads of local councils, in Damascus, Syria in this handout released by SANA on February 17, 2019. SANA/Handout via REUTERS/File Photo

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said the Syrian presidential election in 2021 would be open to anybody who wants to run and that there would be numerous challengers for the presidency.

Assad, who made the comment in an interview broadcast on Monday on Russian state-funded television channel RT, faced two challengers at the 2014 election which he won by a landslide, but which his opponents dismissed as a charade.

“Last time we were three and this time of course we are going to have as much as they want to nominate. There are going to be numerous nominees,” Assad said.

Reporting by Maria Kiselyova; Writing by Tom Balmforth; Editing by Catherine Evans

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