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    Syria Government 1997

      Country name
      conventional long form: Syrian Arab Republic
      conventional short form: Syria
      local long form: Al Jumhuriyah al Arabiyah as Suriyah
      local short form : Suriyah
      former: United Arab Republic (with Egypt)

      Data code SY

      Government type republic under military regime since March 1963

      National capital Damascus

      Administrative divisions 14 provinces (muhafazat, singular - muhafazah); Al Hasakah, Al Ladhiqiyah,Al Qunaytirah, Ar Raqqah, As Suwayda', Dar'a, Dayr az Zawr, Dimashq, Halab,Hamah, Hims, Idlib, Rif Dimashq, Tartus

      Independence 17 April 1946 (from League of Nations mandate under French administration)

      National holiday National Day, 17 April (1946)

      Constitution 13 March 1973

      Legal system based on Islamic law and civil law system; special religious courts;has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

      Suffrage 18 years of age; universal

      Executive branch
      chief of state: President Hafiz al-ASAD (since 22 February 1971); note - President ASADseized power in the November 1970 coup, assumed presidential powers 22 February1971, and was confirmed as president in the 12 March 1971 national elections;Vice Presidents 'Abd al-Halim ibn Said KHADDAM (since 11 March 1984), Rifaatal-ASAD (since 11 March 1984), and Muhammad Zuhayr MASHARIQA (since 11 March1984)
      head of government: Prime Minister Mahmud ZUBI (since 1 November 1987), Deputy Prime MinistersLt. Gen. Mustafa TALAS (since 11 March 1984), Salim YASIN (since NA December1981), and Rashid AKHTARINI (since 4 July 1992)
      cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the president
      elections: president elected by popular vote for a seven-year term; election lastheld 2 December 1991 (next to be held NA December 1998); vice presidents appointed by the president; prime minister and deputy prime ministers appointedby the president
      election results: Hafiz al-ASAD reelected president; percent of vote - Hafiz al-ASAD 99.98%

      Legislative branch unicameral People's Council or Majlis al-shaab (250 seats; members electedby popular vote to serve four-year terms)
      elections: last held 24-25 August 1994 (next to be held NA 1998)
      election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - National ProgressiveFront 167, independents 83

      Judicial branch Supreme Constitutional Court, justices are appointed for four-year termsby the president; High Judicial Council; Court of Cassation; State Security Courts

      Political parties and leaders
      National Progressive Front includes : the ruling Arab Socialist Renaissance (Ba'th) Party, Hafiz al-ASAD,president of the republic, secretary general of the party, and chairman ofthe National Progressive Front; Syrian Arab Socialist Party (ASP), 'Abd al-GhaniKANNUT; Arab Socialist Union (ASU), Jamal ATASSI; Syrian Communist Party (SCP),Yusuf FAYSAL; Arab Socialist Unionist Party, Safwan QUDSI; Democratic SocialistUnion Party, Ahmad al-ASAD

      Political pressure groups and leaders non-Ba'th parties have little effective political influence; Communistparty ineffective; conservative religious leaders; Muslim Brotherhood

      International organization participation ABEDA, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, CCC, ESCWA, FAO, G-24, G-77, IAEA, IBRD,ICAO, ICC, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat,Interpol, IOC, ISO, ITU, NAM, OAPEC, OIC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UNRWA,UPU, WFTU, WHO, WMO, WToO

      Diplomatic representation in the US
      chief of mission : Ambassador Walid MUALEM
      chancery: 2215 Wyoming Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008
      telephone: [1] (202) 232-6313
      FAX: [1] (202) 234-9548

      Diplomatic representation from the US
      chief of mission: Ambassador Christopher W. S. ROSS
      embassy: Abou Roumaneh, Al-Mansur Street No. 2, Damascus
      mailing address : P. O. Box 29, Damascus
      telephone: [963] (11) 333-2814, 333-0788, 332-0783
      FAX: [963] (11) 224-7938

      Flag description three equal horizontal bands of red (top), white, and black with twosmall green five-pointed stars in a horizontal line centered in the whiteband; similar to the flag of Yemen, which has a plain white band and of Iraq, which has three green stars (plus an Arabic inscription) in a horizontalline centered in the white band; also similar to the flag of Egypt, whichhas a symbolic eagle centered in the white band

      NOTE: The information regarding Syria on this page is re-published from the 1997 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Syria Government 1997 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Syria Government 1997 should be addressed to the CIA.

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    Revised 06-Mar-02
    Copyright © 2002 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)