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Page last updated at 20:40 GMT, Tuesday, 6 October 2009 21:40 UK

Madagascar unity cabinet 'agreed'

Andry Rajoelina (centre) arrives at a rally in Antananarivo, Madagascar, 17 March 2009
Andry Rajoelina (c) will reportedly stay president in the new cabinet

Madagascar's political rivals have agreed on cabinet posts in a new unity government, officials at power-sharing talks have said.

The announcement follows weeks of discussions aimed at ending a political crisis that began earlier this year.

Under the agreement, Andry Rajoelina remains president, delegates said.

Mr Rajoelina ousted the former President Marc Ravalomanana in March with the backing of the army, after months of anti-government protests.

He and his allies accused the deposed president of being a tyrant who misspent public money.

Aid suspended

The political struggle led to the deaths of more than 100 people and crippled the island's tourist industry.

A power-sharing agreement was agreed in August following negotiations in the Mozambican capital, Maputo.

However, opposition parties refused to recognise ministers named by Mr Rajoelina and accused him of breaking the deal.

But speaking on Tuesday night, Ange Andrianarisoa, who heads one of the four delegations, said the parties had reached an accord.

"We now have the three posts that were missing in Maputo," he said.

"The president is Andry Rajoelina, the vice-president is Emmanuel Rakotovahiny, and the prime minister is Eugene Mangalaza."

Mr Andrianarisoa said that Mr Ravalomanana had accepted that Mr Rajoelina could remain president on condition he did not stand at the next presidential election.

Mr Rajoelina, a 35-year-old former disc-jockey, is not internationally recognised as Madagascar's head of state and many countries suspended aid to the island state.



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