1996 File photo of Rene Preval
newly re-elected as Haiti President,
taken during an official visit in Canada.
: Haiti declared Rene Preval, a one-time ally of ousted leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide, the country's next president today after reaching a deal on vote fraud claims that averted a feared outbreak of violence.
Preval, a former president opposed by the same wealthy elite who helped drive Aristide from power two years ago but passionately supported by the Caribbean country's poor, claimed "massive fraud" in the February 7 election had deprived him of a first-round victory in one of the world's poorest countries.
Rene Preval has been declared the winner with 51 per cent," council President Max Mathurin said in the statement, setting the country of 8.5 million off on the next chapter in a turbulent political history marked by instability, dictatorships and bloodshed.
Photo by Pierre Roussel / Images Distribution