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The World : Observers Barred by Haiti

December 20, 1987

Haiti's ruling military junta issued a new election law that would bar observers from voting stations and require voters to hand ballots to polling officials instead of depositing them in a sealed box. The law, announced on state television, would apply initially to the Jan. 17 presidential election that was scheduled after the Nov. 29 elections, Haiti's first in 30 years, were canceled because of violence. The junta leader, Lt. Gen. Henri Namphy, afterward appointed an electoral council to replace November's independent panel to oversee the elections. The new law subjects to fine and imprisonment any voter who challenges a candidate's qualifications for the January ballot.

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