Bashar takes oath of office

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Damascus

Syrian President Bashar Assad was sworn in Saturday for a fourth seven-year term in the war-torn country, pledging to overcome the impact of Western economic sanctions and retake territory still out of his control after 10 years of fighting.

Even as the swearing-in ceremony was held at the presidential palace, attended by clergymen, lawmakers, political figures, army officers and other supporters, activists reported that government shelling in the last rebel enclave in the northwest killed at least six people, including three children and their grandmother.—AP

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