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Haiti: Anti-government protesters call for President Martelly to quit


Haiti

Haiti: Anti-government protesters call for President Martelly to quit

Haitians have taken to the streets of Port-au-Prince calling for the resignation of president Michel Martelly and fresh elections amid growing political anger in the Caribbean nation.

An estimated 5,000 people marched through the centre of the capital to protest against what they claim is a lack of action by authorities to alleviate hunger and tackle a cholera epidemic.

Despite starting off peacefully, the protest quickly escalated with riot police firing tear gas to disperse the crowd as protesters burned tyres and blocked streets.

Anti-government protests in Haiti have become increasingly common in recent months as discontent grows over perceived government corruption and a lack of change in the impoverished country since a catastrophic earthquake in 2010 which left tens of thousands dead.

President Martelly, who is midway through a six-year term, has accused his opponents of fomenting instability and blocking legislation that would help the country.

Earlier this year, Martelly appointed a nine-member council tasked with organising municipal and legislative elections this year that were supposed to be held more than two years ago.

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