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HAITIAN PRIEST SAYS BUSH IS VICTIM OF VOODOO CURSE

SHARE HAITIAN PRIEST SAYS BUSH IS VICTIM OF VOODOO CURSE

President Bush is the victim of a voodoo curse, and the only way to improve his political fortunes is to change his policy on Haiti, a Haitian Roman Catholic priest said Friday.

The Rev. Gerard Jean-Juste said he did not know who put the curse on Bush, but he said it happened after Haiti's September 1991 coup in which President Jean-Bertrand Aristide was ousted.The first evidence came when Bush got sick during a state dinner in Tokyo, the priest said in an article in this week's edition of the newspaper Haiti En Marche.

"You remember when Mr. Bush fell under the table in Japan? It was a salutory warning," wrote Jean-Juste, an aide to Aristide and a former leader of Miami's Haitian community.

Jean-Juste said Bush's fortunes could improve if he changed his administration's policy of returning all Haitian refugees, an order that President-elect Clinton pledged Thursday to rescind.

In an interview Friday, Jean-Juste said he did not think Haiti's image would be tarnished by publicizing the widespread belief here in black magic.

"When you hurt someone and the person has no means of receiving justice, you must expect the person has recourse to his spirituality," said Jean-Juste. "Voodoo is part of Haitian culture . . . If Haitians understood the power they could get from voodoo, many things couldn't happen."