PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- Haitians angry over the cholera epidemic ignored exhortations from health workers to stop violence that is disrupting treatment efforts, and authorities feared more unrest in the capital Friday.

Violence spread into Port-au-Prince for the first time Thursday after three days of upheaval in the country's north. Protesters threw rocks at U.N. peacekeepers, attacked foreigners' cars, blocked roads with burning tires, and toppled light poles.

The upheaval over a cholera outbreak that has killed more than 1,100 people comes just days before national elections planned for Nov. 28. U.N. officials argue that the violence is being encouraged by forces that want to disrupt the ballot, and some demonstrators Thursday threw rocks at an office of President Rene Preval's Unity party and tore down campaign posters.

But the anger is fueled by suspicions that a contingent of Nepalese soldiers brought cholera with them to Haiti and spread the disease from their rural base into the Artibonite River system, where the initial outbreak was centered last month. It is a suspicion shared by some prominent global health experts.

Cholera had not been recorded before in Haiti despite rampant bad sanitation and poor access to drinking water, problems that cause outbreaks of the disease in other parts of the world. Cholera is endemic to Nepal and there was an upsurge there before the Nepalese troops came to Haiti.

Experts have not pinpointed the origin of Haiti's epidemic, however, and the 12,000-member U.N. Stabilization Mission in Haiti, or MINUSTAH, denies responsibility.

U.N. peacekeepers have been the dominant security force in Haiti for six years, and there was resentment against them even before the cholera outbreak.


Protesters in Haiti's capital are lashing out at U.N. peacekeepers and the government.

They're blocking roads, burning barricades, and attacking vehicles after days of rioting in northern Haiti over suspicions that a cholera outbreak began with U.N. peacekeepers.

The disease was not recorded on the island, which was ravaged this year by earthquake and more recently a hurricane, until peacekeepers arrived. The U.N. denies responsibility for the outbreak.

Cholera has killed at least 1,000 people and sickened more than 16,000. It's spreading rapidly, mostly because of dirty water.

A Green Bay family leaves for Haiti Friday morning hoping to bring enough supplies and medicine to help hundreds of Haitians fighting the deadly disease.

Bill and Ann Galvin's living room looks more like a makeshift medical station with boxes of gloves, toothbrushes, and saline solution for IVs.

They're packing as much as their suitcases will hold, bound for Haiti where their daughter Brittany has volunteered for a year-and-a-half as a certified nursing assistant.

She helped after the earthquake and is now in the middle of the cholera outbreak.

"She told us a story about a lady that brought a small child in and had to walk for over a day to get the child there and then the child died, and she had to walk all the way back home with the child for it to be buried," Bill Galvin recounted.

Brittany tells her family the cholera in the water is everywhere, so the Galvins are taking 55 pounds of plastic faucets for water purification systems.

"And while we're down there we're going to be picking up five gallon pails, and what they do is attach the faucets to the pails and they have a filter system they build," Mr. Galvin explained.

These faucets should provide clean water for 300 to 400 families.

It's a simple addition but the Galvins say everything is so expensive in Haiti few people can afford them.

They're also taking donated dental supplies. As a dental hygienist, Ann Galvin hopes to help children at a local school.

They know the journey will be challenging -- dealing with disease and political unrest -- but also know they can't ignore a call for help.

"I think it's important that people try and give them aid," Mr. Galvin said. "They've gone through so much for so long that if the aid organizations quit, what would happen there would be horrific."


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