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2 of 3 Comoro Islands Hold Elections - 2002-04-02


Two of the three Comoro Islands have held elections for island president as part of a peace plan aimed at resolving years of instability in the Indian Ocean nation.

Voters on the islands of Anjouan and Moheli went to the polls Sunday without incident. Preliminary results indicate the current president of Anjouan, Colonel Mohamed Bacar, has won at least 70 percent of the vote. Results from Moheli indicate the election there will go to a second round.

The third and largest island, Grande Comore, will also vote for a president, but that ballot has been postponed while debate continues on the island's new constitution.

Under a peace agreement, the three islands are to reunite in a federation meant to stop numerous secessionist movements. Each island will have its own president and constitution. There will also be a federation president, a post that will rotate within the union every four years.

A fourth island in the archipelago, Mayotte, remains a French overseas territory, having voted against independence in 1975.

Some information for this report provided by AFP.

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