Damascus: The Syrian government is holding a national referendum on a new draft constitution aimed at quelling the country’s uprising by ending the ruling Baath Party’s five-decade domination of power, amid continuing violent unrest and a boycott by the opposition.
The new constitution calls for a multi-party parliamentary election within three months.
Polling stations opened at 5 a.m. GMT and the vote is scheduled to last 12 hours. The country has 14.6 million eligible voters who were asked to cast ballots on whether they approve or reject the recently drafted constitution in more than 14,000 polling stations around the country.
The opposition has dismissed Sunday’s vote as a farce and demands President Bashar al-Assad stand down.
The vote comes amid ongoing violence, with activists saying more than 89 people died across Syria on Saturday.