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Ex-president Preval leads Haiti election results

[JURIST] Initial results from the February 7 presidential election [JURIST report; BBC backgrounder] in Haiti indicate that Rene Preval [BBC profile; Wikipedia profile], a former president and ally of ousted leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] has won with over 60 percent of the vote. If the current results are certified the simple majority of votes for Preval will circumvent the need for a second-round vote in March. Leslie Manigat [BBC backgrounder; Wikipedia profile], also a former president, currently trails Preval with 13.4 percent of the vote. Charles Baker [BBC backgrounder; Wikipedia profile], representing voters opposed to Aristide, has 6.1 percent.

The election marks the first national vote since Aristide was ousted from power [JURIST report] two years ago. Preval has distanced himself [AP report] from Aristide's Lavalas Family Party [party website, in French] by voicing support for the UN peacekeeping force in place throughout the Caribbean nation, but has also said that he would not oppose Aristide's return from South Africa. Reuters has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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