Sunday, January 16, 2011

Jean Claude Duvalier

Haiti’s exiled former dictator, Jean-Claude Duvalier, returned unexpectedly to his homeland Sunday for the first time since he was deposed in a coup in 1986.

Although the reason was not immediately clear, his return, reported by news agencies and radio stations in Haiti, appeared to take the Haitian government completely by surprise.

He returned as Haiti remains in a political crisis over a disputed election last fall and the country continues to recover from a devastating earthquake a year ago last week.

Mr. Duvalier, known as “Baby Doc,” had ruled Haiti after the 1971 death of his father, the authoritarian François Duvalier, known as “Papa Doc.” The son had been living in France in exile.

Reuters reported that he was met at the airport in Port-au-Prince by enthusiastic supporters.

Earlier Sunday, the American ambassador to Haiti embraced an international report rejecting the results of the presidential election in November, adding pressure on Haitian officials to reconsider the outcome.


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