#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 3°C Sunday 17 January 2021
Advertisement

Syrian president due to address nation following violent protest clashes

Dozens of people have died in a government crackdown on pro-reform demonstrations; President Assad is now expected to offer symbolic reforms to ease tensions.

A Syrian soldier waves Syrian flags during a pro-Assad demonstration in Damascus yesterday.
A Syrian soldier waves Syrian flags during a pro-Assad demonstration in Damascus yesterday.
Image: AP Photo/Muzaffar Salman

SYRIAN PRESIDENT BASHAR Assad is expected to address his nation today to offer a range of symbolic reforms including removing the state of emergency imposed almost 50 years ago.

The cabinet resigned yesterday in Assad’s latest efforts to appease protesters calling not for his resignation but for political reform and greater freedoms.

The prime minister and rest of the cabinet are staying on in place as a caretaker government until the next government is formed.

That new government is expected to introduce new reforms including the end to that emergency law and an easing of restrictions on the media and political parties, according to Al Arabiya.

More than 60 people have died in a wave of protests across Syrian cities since 16 March, when security forces cracked down on the demonstrations. They opened fire on protesters in Daraa, Syrian human rights groups told Human Rights Watch.

Al Jazeera reports that roads into Damascus were blocked off by police yesterday as thousands gathered in the city centre to show their support for Assad, chanting, “The people want Bashar al-Assad”.

Read next:

COMMENTS