Syria will hold a presidential elections on May 26th likely to keep President Bashar al-Assad in power.
The election, announced on Sunday by the speaker of the Syrian parliament Hamouda Sabbagh, will be the second since the war consumed Syria in March 2011.
The Syrian Democratic Council (SDC) on Monday announced that it would not participate in the presidential elections, rejecting to play a role in elections which do not meet the criteria laid out in United Nations (UN) Security Council Resolution 2254.
The SDC said in a written statement that it is “not concerned with any elections that do not achieve the aspirations of Syrians in their lives, rights and political will, and will not be a facilitator of any electoral procedure that violates the spirit of the UN Resolution 2254.”
Adopted in 2015 by the UN Security Council, Resolution 2254 is a roadmap for a truce and political settlement in Syria between Damascus and opposition groups.
“We affirm that we will not be part of the presidential election process nor will we participate in it, and our position is consistant that there will be no elections before there is a political solution in accordance with international decisions,” stated the SDC.
The SDC is the highest political assembly of North and East Syria, also known as Rojava, which has been administrated by the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES).
Ahead of the vote, the foreign ministers of Britain, France, Germany, Italy and the United States called for a “boycott” of the election, which they predicted would not be “free or fair” and would simply serve to re-empower Assad.
On March 16th, The US ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield urged the international community not to “be fooled” by Syria’s forthcoming presidential election.
“These elections will neither be free nor fair. They will not legitimise the Assad regime,” said Thomas-Greenfield, referring to president Bashar al-Assad.