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A woman casts her ballot at a polling station in the Nubl neighborhood of Aleppo, Syria, on Sunday. Photo: AFP via Getty Images

Polls closed in Syria's elections Sunday night, which saw voting take place in former rebel strongholds for the first time since the civil war that displaced millions began in 2011, per DW.

The big picture: The elections were delayed twice because of the coronavirus pandemic. They took place amid an economic crisis and as new U.S. sanctions took effect. With no opposition involvement, the polls were denounced as a "farce," Reuters notes. Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad's forces control about 70% of the country, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which reported a bomb exploded in the rebel-held north on election night, wounding 10 people.

Go deeper

Businesses give employees paid time off to work polls on Election Day

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

An overwhelming number of companies this year are giving employees paid time off to work the polls on Election Day.

Why it matters: The push from corporate America comes amid a shortage of poll workers, with many older people who would typically do the job planning to stay home because of COVID-19.

Trump says he plans to launch new social media network in 2022

Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Wednesday announced plans to launch a social media network called "Truth Social," and that it would go public via a SPAC.

Why it matters: Most ex-presidents are focused on their legacies, by creating presidential libraries or engaging in philanthropic endeavors. Trump, however, remains consumed by social media.

Beauty giant Coty Cosmetics looking to sell its own branded products

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi. Photo: Axios on HBO

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi tells Axios the beauty giant will “probably” introduce Coty-branded products one day.

Why it matters: Coty produces some of the world’s most popular fragrances, skin care products and color cosmetics on behalf of other well-known brands, but has shied away from producing its own branded products.