Administration official says Syrian election 'borders on ludicrous'

Syria's decision to hold parliamentary elections Monday in the midst of an armed insurrection "borders on ludicrous," U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said Monday.

The country held multi-party elections for the 250 seats in Parliament as part of President Bashar al-Assad's pledge to democratize the country. The poll was largely denounced as a sham by western leaders and the Syrian opposition, which called for a boycott.

"It's not really possible to hold credible elections in a climate where basic human rights are being denied to the citizens and the government is continuing to carry out daily assaults on the citizens, on its own citizens," Toner said during the daily State Department press briefing. "So to hold a parliamentary election in that kind of atmosphere ... borders on ludicrous."