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Yearbook 2009

Haiti. The ruling party Lespwa won big in the second round of elections to the Senate on June 21, but failed to get its own majority. According to countryaah, President René Préval's plans to enforce substantial constitutional changes must therefore be subject to a great deal of cow trading within Congress.

2009 Haiti

However, the election also made it clear that the Haitians do not have much confidence in the political community as a whole; turnout was woefully low, even lower than in the first round of the Senate elections on April 26, when no more than 11 percent of voters voted. In part, the lack of interest in the election was due to the fact that former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's popular party Fanmi Lavalas was not allowed to participate in either the first or second round. The Election Commission stated as a reason that the party did not provide the necessary documentation to prepare, but many judges, both in Haiti and abroad, indicated that the decision was influenced by President Préval and that the already low confidence in the democratic process in the country could be further weakened.

During the year, the United Nations appointed former US President Bill Clinton as a special UN envoy in Haiti. His job is to assist the government in the economic development of the country to achieve political stability. Clinton is very popular in Haiti since he, as US President in 1994, opened the way for the then recently deposed and elected President Aristide's return to power.

At the same time, the Security Council voted to extend the UN force MINUSTAH's mission in Haiti by another year. Political stability appeared to be at risk when the Senate voted unanimously in late October to dismiss Prime Minister Michèle Pierre-Louis. She was replaced by Jean-Max Bellerive.

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