MOSCOW, May 28. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Bashar al-Assad on his re-election victory in the May 26 presidential race in Syria, according to a congratulatory telegram circulated by the Kremlin press office on Friday.
"The voting results have fully confirmed your immense political prestige, and the trust [your] fellow citizens have for the policy pursued under your leadership towards stabilizing the situation in Syria as quickly as possible and strengthening its state institutions," the congratulatory telegram reads.
Putin also "stressed that the Russian side intends to continue rendering comprehensive support to its Syrian partners in fighting terrorism and extremism, and promoting the process of a political settlement and the country’s post-conflict recovery."
Speaker of the People’s Council of Syria Hammouda Sabbagh announced on Thursday that incumbent President Bashar al-Assad had won the republic’s May 26 presidential elections, securing 95.1% of the votes.
A seven-year presidential term is enshrined in Syria’s 2012 Constitution. During the previous presidential race, held in Syria in 2014, Assad won 88.7% of the votes.
The Syrian incumbent head of state assumed the presidency after the death of his father Hafez al-Assad, who had ruled the country with an iron fist for three decades. In 2007, Bashar al-Assad was elected to his second presidential term following a referendum and took the oath of office before the legislature’s lawmakers. Assad is Secretary-General of the Arab Socialist Ba’ath Party that has been the country’s ruling force since 1963.