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Syria holds parliamentary polls in regime-held areas

Syrians cast their votes for the parliamentary elections at a polling station in Damascus, on April 13, 2016President Bashar al-Assad’s regime held parliamentary polls in areas of Syria under its control on Wednesday, with some voting enthusiastically but others dismissing the elections as a sham. Assad pressed ahead with the vote despite another round of UN-brokered peace talks that started the same day in Geneva aimed at ending the devastating five-year conflict, with a political transition and the Syrian leader’s future key sticking points. Voters could cast ballots at some 7,200 polling stations opened in government-held areas — around a third of the country’s territory where about 60 percent of the population lives.

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