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Haiti To Recount Votes

 PORT-AU-PRINCE - Haiti`s Provisional Electoral Council has said it will recount the votes from the December 7th preliminary election results, after protests continued in the capital for another day, shutting down the country.

The PEC`s comments come as Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is scheduled to visit Haiti this weekend with evangelist Franklin Graham, according to CNN.  Palin and Graham are set to visit a cholera clinic in addition to other stops in the country.

Haiti`s election council said it will begin the review of tabulation sheets due to the `evident dissatisfaction` being currently exhibited over the results of the November 28th poll.

The council added that the three candidates, who garnered the most votes in the election, as well as national and international election observers, will be allowed to oversee the process at the official tabulation center.

PEC officials urged candidates to push their followers to stay calm and let the process begin.  The current unrest was provoked after the announcement late Tuesday that Rene Préval`s protégé - Jude Célestin - had edged out popular singer, Michel Martelly, for a spot in a January run-off against former first lady, Mirlande Manigat.

The preliminary election results showed Manigat, 70, with 31.4 percent of the vote, Célestin with 22.5 percent, and Martelly with 21.8 percent. The U.S. Embassy in Haiti has said the preliminary results appeared to conflict with reports from observers who monitored the count. Just over 1 million people cast accepted ballots out of some 4.7 million registered voters.

Préval has called for calm even as protestors, considered to be largely Martelly supporters, set fire to the ruling UNITY party`s headquarters Wednesday and thousands took to the streets in Les Cayes, Cap-Haitien and other cities. Radio Kiskeya in Haiti cited an unconfirmed report that said at least four demonstrators have so far been killed.



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