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Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says his government has successfully overcome the political crisis and the deadly violence in the country.
“Syria has been able to overcome the pressures and threats it has faced for years and is able to get out of this crisis thanks to the strength of its people and commitment to unity and independence,” SANA cited Assad as saying on Thursday.
Syria has been the scene of deadly unrest since mid-March 2011 and many people, including security forces, have lost their lives in the violence.
The West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing protesters, but Damascus blames ”outlaws, saboteurs and armed terrorist groups” for the unrest, stating that it is being orchestrated from abroad.
Assad’s Thursday comments came during a meeting with the Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s special envoy and Minister of Communications and Information Technology Reza Taqipour.
Taqipour described the crisis in Syria as part of a broader scheme targeting the entire Middle East region, and reiterated Iran’s sustained support for the Syrian nation in the face of the circumstances they are faced with.
On Thursday, the new Syrian parliament began work under a new constitution approved by a majority of voters in a February referendum, and three members of the independent judicial body, the Supreme Constitutional Court, were also sworn in before the president
On May 7, Syria held the first parliamentary elections under the new constitution that paved the way for a multi-party political system in the country.
About 7,195 candidates, including independent and opposition figures, contested for the 250 parliamentary seats.
The general polls, which saw more than half of the eligible voters cast their ballots, were part of the reforms promised by President Assad.