Rene Preval's primary concern "EXILE"

Hj - December 1 2010, 10:19 PM

Since June 2009 a memo was sent under the name of then U.S. Ambassador Janet Sanderson saying that President Rene Preval's primary concern ahead of last weekend's election for his successor was to ensure the winner would not force him into EXILE


A leaked memo by a U.S. ambassador to Haiti was released Wednesday by Wikileaks along with an earlier cable about Preval

The memo, which shows an intimate knowledge of the inner workings of the Preval administration and Haiti in general, has surfaced at an awkward moment.

Votes in the disputed election are now being counted.

It says that Preval's "overriding goal is to orchestrate the 2011 presidential transition in such a way as to ensure that whoever is elected will allow him to go home unimpeded.

Based on our conversations, this is indeed a matter that looms large for Preval."

The document could feed opposition-stoked rumors that Preval rigged the election to elect his preferred successor, state-run construction company chief Jude Celestin.

That perception has fueled violent clashes between opposition-candidate supporters and U.N. peacekeepers.

Preval's Unity party denied it perpetrated fraud and accused Celestin's rival candidates of trying to foment a coup d'etat.

The memo, dated seven months before an earthquake destroyed most of Haiti's capital, paints the now 67-year-old president as isolated, independent, "wary of change and suspicious of outsiders." It calls his political decisionmaking "erratic," says he neglected his health after a bout with protstate cancer and had returned to drinking.

But the memo also characterizes Preval as "Haiti's indespensible man" and sole influential politican

34;...Managing Preval will remain challenging during the remainder of his term yet doing so is key to our success and that of Haiti..."

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