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Syria opposition powerless as Assad holds election

People push a pushchair and a trolley loaded with their belongings on May 12, 2014 in a destroyed neighbourhood of the Old City of HomsSyria’s divided rebels and their foreign backers have been watching in disbelief as the regime gears up for an election to give Bashar al-Assad another presidential mandate despite their uprising. The vote, which the Damascus regime can hold only in territory it controls and embassies abroad, signals confidence by Assad and his allies that they will win the war. I just can’t believe it’s going to happen,” sighed Thaer, an activist from Homs city, once known as “the capital of the revolution”. Now, he says, the election is a new signal that Syria’s revolt has escalated into a proxy war, “in which the Syrian people are paying the highest price.”

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