Haiti PM reshuffles parliament

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iol news pic Laurent Lamothe Haiti PM REUTERS Haitian Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

Port au Prince - Haiti's prime minister has named seven new ministers - including four women - as part of a cabinet reshuffle in the poor Caribbean country, a statement said Wednesday.

Laurent Lamothe's move Tuesday was approved by President Michel Martelly, according to a government release.

Four women are among the newly named cabinet members, including Bernice Fidelia, a Haitian American, to Minister of Haitians Living Abroad.

Other areas to be overseen by women include youth, sports and civic action, communications, and culture.

The social affairs, environment and interior ministries will also see new leadership in a government that consists of 23

ministers and 10 secretaries of states.

Martelly on Tuesday headed to a summit in Chile between the European Union and the regional bloc of Latin American and Caribbean states.

Ahead of his arrival in Chile, Martelly is expected to undergo a medical checkup in the US state of Florida, according to a government source.

Earlier this month, Martelly said Haiti would hold “free and fair” partial legislative elections and local balloting later this year.

The voting, for 10 out of 30 Senate seats, had been set to take place last year but was delayed amid disagreement between bickering politicians over who would oversee the elections.

Haiti is still recovering from a devastating earthquake in January 2010 that killed around a quarter of a million people. Three years later, hundreds of thousands are still living in squalid makeshift camps. - Sapa-AFP

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