US Secretary of State Kerry presses Haitian president on long-delayed elections
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry urged Haitian President Michel Martelly to hold parliamentary and local elections scheduled for the end of this month in a “timely fashion.”
The elections have been delayed for three years amid a slow recovery from the 2010 earthquake that devastated the deeply impoverished nation.
Martelly said in June the first round of elections for 20 senators and 112 deputies would be held on October 26, while a municipal vote is to take place two days later.
In a telephone conversation with the Haitian leader, Kerry “commended President Martelly’s efforts to build consensus around electoral legislation that will allow elections to occur in a timely fashion,” according to a statement.
Kerry also “stressed the need for all Haitians to come together in good faith to support elections,” and urged Martelly to continue to work with other political parties and civil society.
The delayed elections have sparked anti-government demonstrations in the Caribbean nation, with protesters calling for Martelly to step down.
The opposition has also called for a new election commission less biased toward the president.
Four years after the massive earthquake, Haiti is still struggling to recover from the widespread devastation that killed 250,000 people and left one million people homeless.
Kerry said holding elections was a crucial part of the recovery, and urged Haiti to strengthen its democracy.
You may be interested
Costa Rica reduces fiscal deficit more than anticipatedAFP and The Tico Times - January 22, 2019
Costa Rica closed 2018 with a fiscal deficit of 6 percent of its GDP, below the 7.2 percent that had…
This week in the Peace Corps: Jumpstarting English with Peace Corps VolunteersPeace Corps Costa Rica - January 22, 2019
JumpStart camps led by Peace Corps Volunteers (PCVs) have officially begun all throughout Costa Rica. These intensive four-week English camps provide…
The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Jan. 21, 2019.Alexander Villegas - January 21, 2019
An attack in Nicaragua, our Puerto Viejo Deep Dive and a new Sele squad. These stories and more in this…