Haiti: Police Shoot Off Tear Gas at Demonstration

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After a largely peaceful but tense protest march, national police shoot off tear gas at an anti-election demo of roughly 700 people. The clash took place near the presidential palace.

Stone-throwing Haitian protesters, on Sunday, demand the annulment of elections held a week ago.

The protesters clash with riot police next to the damaged presidential palace in the capital.

The police respond with tear gas, causing the demonstrators to scatter and blow stinging gas clouds over a large camp homeless in front of the palace in Port-au-Prince - survivors from the January 12 earthquake.

Between 700 and 1,000 protesters stage their second march in 3 days in Port-au-Prince.

The demanded cancellation of the troubled November 28 elections, in which a group of presidential candidates denounced (quote), "massive fraud."

Some of the opposition candidates, including Charles Henri Baker and Jean-Henry Ceant, lead protesters from the relatively well-off area of Petionville to the poorer zone of Delmas.

The demonstration stared with around 300 people, swelling to roughly 700 as it developed.

Dozens of national police officers wearing riot gear patrolled the march route with no sign of MINUSTAH forces.

The protest remained peaceful, although some of the candidates leading the march were seen encouraging the energetic crowd to settle down.

As the marchers arrived at the Provisional Electoral Council headquarters in Delmas, police set up barricades, which the group quickly knocked down.

The United Nations peacekeeping mission in Haiti and international observers have cautiously endorsed the elections held a week ago and are calling for calm, ahead of the announcement of preliminary results expected on Tuesday.

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