Photo: SANA news website.
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region –Syrian President Bashar al-Assad who took office in 2000 and has been fighting a vicious civil war for several years appears on his country’s banknotes for the first time.
The new 2,000 pound banknote, which went into circulation on Sunday, is the first in Syria to feature the image of the current president al-Assad as reported by state news agency Sana.
Duraid Durgham, Central Bank Governor stated it is one of several new banknotes which was designed and printed years ago, but its circulation postponed, "due to the circumstances of the war and exchange rate fluctuations".
Durgham said it was now time to put the new note into circulation due to the wear and tear of existing notes. It is circulating in Damascus and a number of other provinces.
At the current exchange rates, the 2,000 pound note is equal to approximately $4 USD.
Prior to the release of the 2,000 note on Sunday, the highest denomination was the 1,000 pound note. Al-Assad’s father, former President Hafez al-Assad who died in 2000, appeared on an older version of the 1,000 pound note which is still in circulation.