9 February 2006

Secretary-General Congratulates Haitians for Commitment to Restore Democracy Following Large Election Turnout

NEW YORK, 8 February (UN Headquarters) -- Following is UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's statement on yesterday's elections in Haiti:

On 7 February, the people of Haiti turned out in large numbers to vote in the presidential and parliamentary elections.  I would like to congratulate all Haitians who participated in the vote for their commitment to exercising their democratic right to choose their future leaders.

I am pleased that, compared to previous elections, yesterday was remarkably free from violence and I applaud the Haitian people for their commitment to restore democracy.  I also appeal for all to respect the official results to be announced by the Provisional Electoral Council.

As the new authorities assume their responsibilities, it will be essential that all political and social actors come together in a spirit of national reconciliation and dialogue in order to build strong democratic institutions and an inclusive governance system.

This is a significant step forward for Haiti.  The international community will continue to support the people of Haiti as they seek to achieve stability, normalcy and development.

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