Madagascar parties agree to end political crisis, set election date

17:03, August 14, 2010      

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Madagascar's Highest Transitional Authority (HAT) leader Andry Rajoelina and more than 90 political parties agreed Friday to take steps to end the country's political crisis and hold a presidential election on May 4 next year.

A document signed by Rajoelina and the parties calls for a national conference of all related parties between Aug. 30 to Sept. 3 to solve the countries' politicial deadlock since Rajoelina came to power after a coup in March last year.

The agreement also sets the dates of a consitutional referendum and parliamentary elections, which will be held on Nov. 17 and March 16, respectively.

Under the accord, Rajoelina's term will end once a new prime minister takes office, while the candidates for the prime minister and other cabinet ministers must be approved by all the agreement's signatories and the country's other political organizations.

Representatives of three former presidents, including Marc Ravalomanana who was ousted in last year's coup, were among the signatories.

On May 12, Rajoelina proposed a calendar for constitutional referendum, parliamentary and presidential elections, but it was rejected by the opposition parties, which were asking for implementation of last year's agreements reached under international mediation efforts.

Rajoelina took over power from Ravalomanana in the Indian Ocean nation with the backing of the military in March 2009, after months of anti- government protests. But the new regime has not been recognized by the interantional community.

Source: Xinhua


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