President Hafez al-Assad and his son Bashar at the funeral of Basel al-Assad - Qurdaha, 1994

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Basel al-Assad died in a car accident while driving to Damascus International Airport on January 21, 1994. Assad's second son, at the time training as a medical doctor in London, was immediately recalled to take over his brother's duties in Syria. Among other things, Bashar al-Assad took over the Syrian Computer Society that was headed by Basel. When Hafez al-Assad died on June 10, 2000 his son Bashar became the new president of Syria, at the age of 34.