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17598: News24.com/AP: Third Minister resigns (fwd)

From: JD Lemieux <lxhaiti@yahoo.com>

19/12/2003 09:43  - (SA)


Port-Au-Prince - Environment Minister Webster Pierre has
become the third member of Haitian President Jean Bertrand
Aristide's government to resign in recent days.

Pierre on Thursday said he resigned to preserve his
"freedom of speech".

He is the third government minister to resign in protest
since the beginning of the month.

Tensions have mounted in the western hemisphere's poorest
country as protests against Aristide have increased in
recent weeks.

Aristide, a former priest, was re-elected president in 2001
for a five-year term. But opponents have accused him of
misrule and corruption and demanded he step down.

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