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Aristide careful to choose right minister

Under pressure from political opponents and the business community, President Jean-Bertrand Aristide dropped his top choice for prime minister and was considering a more moderate candidate Sunday.

The front-runner, interim Foreign Minister Claudette Werleigh, was ruled out because of her leftist beliefs. Aristide was leaning toward a prominent businessman to replace caretaker Prime Minister Robert Malval, said an official close to the government.

Such a choice could placate business leaders and many in the middle and upper classes who feel threatened by the return of the populist priest.

Aristide was swept into power in December 1990 by Haiti's poor, and his selection of cronies and inexperienced people for his Cabinet then earned him stiff opposition. He was overthrown by the army after seven months in office and restored with the help of the U.S. military on Oct. 15.

There was no word on when the president might announce his choice.

In other developments, a Miami man working as a translator for the international police force in Haiti was electrocuted Sunday.

Elder Rousseau, 42, was killed when he accidentally came in contact with a live electrical wire about 3:30 a.m. as he patrolled with U.S. military police and Haitian police officers, said Paul Browne, deputy director of the monitoring force.

The patrolling team was checking a report of shots fired in the Carrefour section of the capital when a local resident told them there was an electric wire down. Rousseau apparently came in contact with that wire.

The only previous deaths since U.S.-led forces arrived in Haiti on Sept. 19 have been three American servicemen who took their own lives.

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