Haitians demand fresh elections

Hundreds of Haitian protesters, including some presidential candidates, took to the streets of Port-au-Prince, the capital, on Sunday demanding the annulment of the recent presidential and legislative council elections.

The demonstrators clashed with riot police, who fired tear gas, when protesters tried to break through a barrier blocking access to the area in front of the earthquake-damaged presidential palace in Port-au-Prince.

Jean-Henry Ceant, one of the presidential contenders, assailed what he described as the “electoral masquerade,” stating that the protests would continue “as long as necessary”.

Charles Baker, another presidential candidate, said: “We are here to protest. We want the elections annulled. There were no elections on the 28th [of November].”

Sunday’s demonstration was the second in three days, as the impoverished, French-speaking Caribbean country awaits the outcome of the poll.

The Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) had promised that the preliminary results should be released on Tuesday.

Jude Celestin, former First Lady Mirlande Manigat and popular musician Michel Martelly are seen as the leading contenders in the race.

Manigat and Martelly had originally joined other candidates in denouncing the poll, but they soon backtracked, declaring that they wanted the vote to be counted.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called on all stakeholders to respect the law and shun violence, warning that unrest will only hinder the ongoing battle against the cholera epidemic, which has to date killed at least 2,000 people.

The joint Organization of American States (OAS)-Caribbean Community (CARICOM) team that monitored the elections has acknowledged instances of violence and voter intimidation but said the problems were not widespread enough to warrant invalidating the election.

The Provisional Electoral Council (CEP) had promised that the preliminary results should be released on Tuesday.

Jude Celestin, former First Lady Mirlande Manigat and popular musician Michel Martelly are seen as the leading contenders in the race.

Manigat and Martelly had originally joined other candidates in denouncing the poll, but they soon backtracked, declaring that they wanted the vote to be counted.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called on all stakeholders to respect the law and shun violence, warning that unrest will only hinder the ongoing battle against the cholera epidemic, which has to date killed at least 2,000 people.

The joint Organization of American States (OAS)-Caribbean Community (CARICOM) team that monitored the elections has acknowledged instances of violence and voter intimidation but said the problems were not widespread enough to warrant invalidating the election.

More from Around NYC