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Tensions Run High in Haiti Amid New Anti-Government Protest Calling for President to Step Down    

Empty streets are seen with blockades on Champs de Mars in Port-au-Prince, Feb. 8, 2021.

Tensions are running high in Haiti Tuesday, a day after police clashed with anti-government protesters demanding that embattled President Jovenel Moise resign.

Opposition groups angered that Moise’s term expired on Sunday named their own leader of the impoverished country after officials claimed they had averted an attempt to kill the president and overthrow the government in a coup.

A demonstrator picks up a tear gas canister during protests against Haiti's President Jovenel Moise, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Feb. 8, 2021.

Moise contends his term will expire on February 7 of next year, citing he was sworn into office for a five-year term in 2017. Just over 20 percent of eligible voters cast ballots in that election.

Moise’s efforts to remain in office have been hampered by the fragile makeup of the political infrastructure.

Agence France-Presse (AFP) reports that some institutions that could help end the stalemate over the length of the presidential term lack the necessary authorization, including the Constitutional Council, which it says only exists on paper.

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