al-Assad, Bashar

al Assad Bashar

(1965- ) President of the Syrian Arab Republic from 2000-present. Bashar al-Assad assumed the presidency upon the death of his father and former Syrian president, Hafez al-Assad. Beginning in 2007, his regime engaged in indirect negotiations with Israel in an attempt to outline the details of a peace agreement, which would include the return of all or part of the occupied Golan Heights. Since early 2011, his regime has been challenged by internal protests calling for political reform and/or regime change. Syrian forces have violently suppressed many of these demonstrations, killing thousands of Syrians. See “Profile: Syria’s Bashar al-Assad.” 25 March 2011. BBC News. 13 June 2011.