New violence in Haiti over results of presidential election

PORT-AU-PRINCE — Clashes and shooting were reported Thursday in Haiti's capital for a second day as demonstrators staged a march to protest what they said was election fraud in the Nov. 28 presidential elections.

At least one person was reported dead in the renewed violence. Frantz Lerebours, the Haitian National Police spokesman, also said that one person had been killed on Wednesday in Les Cayes, a seaside city in the southwest, as a mob tried to burn a local election office. In the north, in Cap-Haitien, gangs clashed but no deaths were reported, Lerebours said.

The protests broke out Wednesday after election officials announced Tuesday night that two candidates had made it into a runoff: Mirlande Manigat, a former first lady, and Jude Célestin, the candidate of current President René Préval's party. Out of the running was Michel "Sweet Micky'' Martelly, who early results had shown running second.

Haitian elections officials said Thursday they will review the tallies of the top three vote getters under the watchful eyes of both Haitian and foreign observers.

The Provisional Electoral Council said that after reviewing the tallies assigned to Manigat, Célestin and Martelly for irregularities, it might ask for a vote recount.

The three leading candidates will be allowed to be present for the review.

While the audit is going, Gaillot Dorsinvil, president of the council, urged the candidates to join electoral institutions in an appeal for calm.

Since the results were released, protesters have paralyzed the capital with demonstrations, set fires and barricaded the streets.

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