- - Monday, October 1, 2012

PORT-AU-PRINCE — Several thousand people poured into the streets of Haiti’s capital Sunday to protest the government of President Michel Martelly.

Demonstrators’ complaints included the high cost of living and allegations of corruption as they snaked through Port-au-Prince.

Some protesters carried small red cards to suggest that Mr. Martelly has committed too many fouls since the former pop music star was sworn in as president in May 2011.

The Martelly government had no immediate public reaction to the protest.

Mr. Martelly, a musician before he turned to politics, presented himself as an outsider when he ran for the presidency. He promised free schooling and houses for people displaced by a massive 2010 earthquake.

But some Haitians complain that Mr. Martelly has fallen short of improving their lives in one of the poorest countries in the world.

“The president has made so many promises but nothing has become a reality,” protester Max Dorlien said. “It’s only a clique of his friends who are making money.”

The Sunday protest followed several weeks of mostly peaceful demonstrations in the countryside.

It also marked the 21st anniversary of the first ouster of two-time President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, a former priest who returned to Haiti last year after seven years in exile.


Fatal shooting mars election campaign

CARACAS — Supporters of Venezuelan presidential candidate Henrique Capriles Radonski had just set out in a caravan of cars for an afternoon of campaigning when they came to a road blocked by a crowd of President Hugo Chavez’s loyalists.

Witnesses said some people in the caravan had gotten out to try to persuade the Chavez supporters to let them through when gunfire rang out.

Two Capriles supporters died in the violence on Saturday in the western state of Barinas, and a third was seriously wounded.

There have been other spasms of violence in the heated campaign ahead of Venezuela’s Oct. 7 election, but this was the first fatal incident, and it sharply ratcheted up tensions.

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