New government appointed


President Bashar al-Assad has appointed a new government in what many observers are describing as an attempt to stop further anti-government protests.  The new Prime Minister is Dr Adel Safar; he was formerly the agriculture minister.

Dr Safar was born in Damascus in 1953, has a degree in agriculture and a PhD in biotechnology.  Most of his career has been in agriculture and he was the agriculture minister from 2003 – 2011.

The president also met with community leaders from Daraa and Banias, the two towns at the epicentre of the protests.  At the same time the president ordered the release of all detainees arrested in the recent wave of protests.

Today, being a Friday, is a major day for protests and it will be a test as to the success of the moves made by the president.

The full list of ministers as published by the Syrian News Agency is:

Prime Minister: Dr. Adel Safar

Minister of Defense: Lieutenant General Ali Habib

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates: Walid al-Moallem

Minister of Oil and Mineral Resources: Engineer Sufian Allaw

Minister of Communications and Technology: Dr. Imad Abdel-Ghani Sabouni

Minister of Endowments (Awqaf): Mohammad Abdul-Sattar al-Sayyed

Minister of Local Administration: Omar Ibrahim Ghalawanji

Minister of Presidential Affairs Mansour Fadlallah Azzam

Minister of Tourism: Lamia Merei Assi

Minister of Culture: Mohammad Riyad Hussein Ismat

Minister of Irrigation: George Malki Sawmi

Minister of Justice: Judge Tayseer Qala Awwad

Minister of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform: Riyad Fareed Hijab

Minister of Social Affairs and Labor: Ridwan al-Habib

Minister of Higher Education: Abdul-Razzaq Sheikh Issa

Minister of Interior: Mohammad Ibrahim al-Shaar

Minister of Finance: Mohammad al-Jleilati

Minister of Economy and Trade: Mohammad Nidal al-Shaar

Minister of Education: Saleh al-Rashed

Minister of Health: Wael Nader al-Halki

Minister of Housing and Construction: Hala Mohammad al-Nasser

Minister of Transport: Fayssal Abbas

Minister of Electricity: Imad Mohammad Deeb Khamis

Minister of Information: Adnan Hasan Mahmoud

Minister of Industry: Adnan Salakho

State Minister for Environmental Affairs: Kawkab al-Sabah Daya

State Minister: Youssef Sleiman Ahmad

State Minister: Ghiyath Jaratli

State Minister: Hussein Mahmoud Farzat

State Minister: Joseph Sweid

State Minister: Hassan al-Sari

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