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Ex-Madagascar leader to run in July elections

Madagascar's ex-president Didier Ratsiraka will stand in July's presidential elections, a source close to the former leader said on Saturday, two days after he returned from an 11-year exile in France. The 76-year-old "sent a proxy to declare his candidacy officially" for the elections on July 24, said the source. Nicknamed "Deba", the Malagasy word for "boss" or "bad guy", Ratsiraka was in power from 1975 to 1993 and again from 1997 to 2002.

Didier Ratsiraka back in Madagascar, ends 11-year exile

Madagascar's former president Didier Ratsiraka returned home from France on Thursday, ending an 11-year exile that followed a bitter election dispute. The 76-year-old is taking part in a national reconciliation conference ahead of polls set for July that aim to break the island's long-running political crisis. "Everything must be discussed, everything can be discussed, without taboo," he told AFP in an interview, saying this included postponement of the election.

Didier Ratsiraka back in Madagascar, ends 11-year exile

Madagascar's former president Didier Ratsiraka returned home from France on Thursday, ending an 11-year exile that followed a bitter election dispute. The 76-year-old ex-leader expressed a "sense of relief and happiness" to be back. "It has been 11 years that I have not been here," he said in brief remarks to reporters at the airport before being driven away to attend a national reconciliation conference.
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