Haiti's rebels threaten to arrest PM

Xinhua Online, 3 March 2004, 13:39:59

HAVANA, March 2 (Xinhuanet)—Haitian rebels said Tuesday that they would arrest Prime Minister Yvon Neptune, a close ally of former President Jean-Bertrand Aristide who had fled the country.

We will arrest him, Paul Arcelin, a senior rebel leader, told a cheering crowd at the army's headquarters. Arrest Neptune, arrest Neptune, shouted his supporters.

Neptune is a top member of Aristide's Lavalas Family party and his former presidential spokesman.

The prime minister's whereabouts are not known. But US Marines, who entered the violence-torn country as part of a multinational force, guarded his office in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince following the arrest threat.

Neptune formally announced Aristide's departure Sunday, and he would be replaced by an independent prime minister under a power-sharing plan aimed to end the Haiti crisis.