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Monday, 22 May, 2000, 08:19 GMT 09:19 UK
Haitian elections pass off peacefully

Early indications from international observers in Haiti are that Sunday's elections were generally successful, with sixty percent of the four million registered voters casting their ballots.

But there are reports of lost ballot papers, polling stations that opened late or not at all and some violence.

The judgement of the observers is crucial in deciding whether five-hundred million dollars of promised foreign aid will be released.

Final results are not expected for several days, with officials painstakingly counting each ballot paper then displaying it for a crowd to scrutinise. President Rene Preval has been running Haiti almost single-handedly since he sacked the entire congress and most of the cabinet a-year-and-half ago, following a dispute with the opposition.

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