Haitians celebrate Carnival as country grapples with stalled elections

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Haitians celebrate Carnival as country grapples with stalled elections
A Carnival performer smokes a cigarette before the start of the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
A Carnival dancer exits the back of a bus as she arrives for the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalís annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
Carnival performers rest before the start of the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
A Carnival performer gets her makeup done for the last days of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
Carnival street performers wait for the start of the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
Performers dance on the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
A reveler performs during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival two days ago was postponed due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
A man in costume waits to roller-skate with a group on the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
A Carnival performer gets into her costume, behind an office window before the start of the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
Revelers with body painted in a mixture of cane sugar and coal depicting the devil, run around a coffin during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - Revelers, their bodies painted with a mixture of cane sugar syrup and coal depicting the devil, perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival two days ago was postponed due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival two days ago was postponed due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
A reveler performs during of 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival two days ago was postponed due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A reveler with body painted with a mixture of cane sugar and coal depicting the devil, performs during of 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name of the carnival for this year is Ayiti Toutan, in Haitian creole,(Haiti always). Yesterday was suspended the first day of carnival by the political situation affecting Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
A man uses stilts to walk to the last day of Carnival street parades in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
TOPSHOT - A reveler performs during of 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name of the carnival for this year is Ayiti Toutan, in Haitian creole,(Haiti always). Yesterday was suspended the first day of carnival by the political situation affecting Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Carnival performers dressed as devils stand by a coffin holding a human skull, representing a victim of the Grim Reaper, on the last day of Carnival celebrations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
A young performer wearing a devil costume, covered in coal and sugar, sips rum on the last day of Carnival in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016. Political tensions haven't stopped the Haitian capital's annual Carnival, but the uncertainty led to the cancellation of the first day of festivities and put such a damper on the party that a number of top bands have pulled out. There have been relatively few decorated floats, a scarcity of sponsors and many Haitians say they are staying away from the capitalâs annual celebration this year out of security concerns. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival two days ago was postponed due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during of 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name of the carnival for this year is Ayiti Toutan, in Haitian creole,(Haiti always). Yesterday was suspended the first day of carnival by the political situation affecting Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 9, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended tdue to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
Revelers perform during the 2016 National Carnival Parade on February 10, 2016 in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The name in Haitian creole of the carnival for this year is 'Ayiti Toutan' (Haiti Always). The launch of the carnival the previous day was suspended due to the political situation affecting Haiti. / AFP / HECTOR RETAMAL (Photo credit should read HECTOR RETAMAL/AFP/Getty Images)
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Thousands of Haitians shrugged off their political woes on Tuesday (February 09) to celebrate Carnival, after instability in the country saw the first day of celebrations cancelled.

The streets of Port-au-Prince burst with colour and music in celebration.

Haiti's Carnival comes just as the country grapples with stalled elections and has been left without a president after Michel Martelly stepped down with no successor.

But for local, Emmanuel Cedreu, there was no dampening the mood.

"It's true that the country is facing a great political problem but it's an obligation for us to come here and have fun because it's our culture, Haiti is our country. Above all else we need to have fun. Without carnival there is no Haiti and without Haiti there is no carnival."

Post-Carnival Haitians will have to wrestle with a transitional government as the country seeks to re-schedule a stalled second-round election.

Haitians Celebrate Carnival

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