Syria: 89.4 percent of voters approve new constitution


Syrian government workers count ballots at the end of the voting day on the referendum for a new constitution in Damascus on February 26, 2012. ANWAR AMRO/AFP/Getty Images


Anwar Amro

BEIRUT, Lebanon — SANA, Syria's state news agency, reported on Monday that 89.4 percent of Syrian voters approved the new constitution in yesterday's referendum.

Naharnet, a Lebanese newswire, quoted Syria's interior minister as saying 57.4 percent of eligible voters cast ballots in yesterday's referendum.

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The New York Times said the percentages translates into "nearly 7.5 million of the 8.4 million people who cast ballots."

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said the vote "fooled nobody." “To open polling stations but continue to open fire on the civilians of the country has no credibility in the eyes of the world,” he said, according to The Times.

Al Akhbar, a Lebanese newspaper, said that the vote ends the legal justification for single party rule by the Baath party, but leaves president Bashar al-Assad in power.