- Associated Press - Sunday, July 3, 2016

BEIRUT (AP) - Syrian President Bashar Assad has issued a presidential decree forming a new Syrian government following parliament elections that were held in April.

Key ministers kept their previous posts in the new Cabinet that was announced Sunday.

They include Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem, Interior Minister Ibrahim al-Shaar and Defense Minister Fahd Jassem al-Freij. Adib Mayalleh, the former central bank governor, was named minister of economy and foreign trade.

Syria held parliament elections in April in government-held parts of the war-devastated country. The opposition and its Western backers rejected the vote as a sham.

Earlier this month, Assad appointed Electricity Minister Imad Khamis, a member of his Baath party, as prime minister-designate and tasked him with forming a government.

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