Mehdi Dakhlallah, a member of the central leadership of Syria’s ruling Baath Party, has said that “European countries are in a state of shock.” Dakhlallah stated that democracy in Syria is “comparable with European democracy,” and stressed that — if it were not for the Baath Party’s popularity — it would not have been able to rule the country for a single day.
“We always receive guests from Germany, France and Italy, and they ask us: “In light of the events in Syria, how did you not cease moving freely and travelling between governorates for security reasons? Why didn’t you stop travelling abroad, and nor did you declare a state of emergency?” said Dakhlallah.
“In the cities, our young people stay up until 3 a.m. smoking argileh,” he said. “The European visitors ask us in astonishment: What war are you facing?”
“Democracy in Syria is comparable to that of Europe,” Dakhlallah said. “Baathists now comprise between 64.5% and 65.5% of the People’s Assembly; yet in Europe’s leading democracies, if there is a party that represents (50 percent +1) in parliament, it alone will form a government. Despite this (popularity), we have ministers from the National Progressive Front parties and independents in our government. By this, I mean that we didn’t seize the government for ourselves.”
“As long as the party has been in government for 40 years, it means that the people are satisfied with its performance,” he said.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.