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Haitian President Purges Army Brass

In a purge that further weakens Haiti’s military, President Jean-Bertrand Aristide has dismissed its entire upper officer corps.

Letters discharging 43 senior officers, including all military personnel above the rank of major, were sent over the weekend, said Aristide spokesman Yvon Neptune. As of Tuesday evening, none had been replaced, Neptune said.

The purge is the latest step to reduce the clout of the stilldangerous army, which led the 1991 coup against Aristide. Its strength recently had been cut from 7,000 to 1,500 soldiers and its headquarters had been turned over to a new Ministry for Women’s Affairs.

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