PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI, NOV. 30 -- Military government leader Gen. Henri Namphy has moved to ensure his prolonged hold on power by dissolving an independent electoral council yesterday, having already canceled national elections after widespread violence and killing by forces opposed to the election, western diplomats and politicans said today.

His actions set the stage for a new, potentially violent confrontation between armed forces leaders and politicians formally allied with the ousted Duvalier dictatorship on one side, and defenders of the electoral council and yesterday's thwarted vote on the other.

"It was a coup d'etat against the constitution. The {Army} will have an election, but they'll have it the way they want it," commented one European diplomat.

Namphy's ruling National Government Council abolished election laws and halted the electoral process late yesterday after Army troops and marauders said to be remnants of the disbanded Ton-Tons Macoutes, Francois Duvalier's paramilitary squads, disrupted the vote by killing at least 25 people and wounding more than 60 in the capital.

Namphy said the Government Council would organize another round of balloting and inaugurate a president by Feb. 7. Haiti has not had a free election in at least three decades.

Late last night, bursts of gunfire were heard again across the city but died down in the dawn hours today. At least two bullet-riddled bodies of unidentified Haitians were found in city streets this morning. But there was no sign of the terrorists during the day.

Haitians ventured uneasily into the quiet streets to stock up on food and gather news by word of mouth. Four of the five main radio stations in the capital were not broadcasting news after yesterday's attacks.

The mood was one of frightened anticipation. Virtually all stores and businesses in the capital remained closed.

Most of the nine members of the defunct electoral council spent the night in hiding under the protection of local embassies.

Electoral council treasurer Alain Rocourt was preparing documents to mount a legal defense of the council's work, a relative said.

Namphy accused the electoral council of "holding itself supreme above the constitution."

U.S. Embassy officials said they were taken by surprise and disappointed by yesterday's violence. The embassy learned of Namphy's decision to break up the electoral council from his 3 p.m. communique yesterday, American officials said.

"You don't have to like the electoral council to guard the people in the streets. You don't only protect people you like," said a U.S. official, referring to the armed forces indifferent response to the violence.

"The fact we supported the electoral council meant we thought highly of its work," a U.S. official noted. The United States gave more than $6 million directly to assist the electoral council.

Apparently referring to this aid, Namphy accused the electoral council of being influenced by foreigners.

"I can't imagine what Gen. Namphy is referring to. We don't view our elections aid as intervention anymore than we viewed our military aide for the Haitian armed forces as intervention," a U.S. official said.

Yesterday the United States cut off all military aid and as much as $40 million of its $102 million economic aid, leaving only its humanitarian assistance program intact. Virtually all of the $1.5 million military aid for this year has already been disbursed, officials said. But teams of U.S. military trainers, who have been working for the past 18 months with four elite Haitian battalions, were withdrawn.

Nevertheless, U.S. officials said it appears that Namphy's three-man Government Council remained committed to bringing democracy to Haiti. But one official warned, "That can only be done through free, fair, credible elections."

Some of the politicians who ran for president in the canceled elections refrained from criticizing the Army directly for abetting the violence and appeared to accept Namphy's offer of a new vote organized by an electoral body of the government's choice.

Louis Dejoie II, one of four front-runners, said in a statement broadcast by radio that he "took note" of Namphy's "solemn pledge" to finish the transition to democracy.

Another front runner, Marc Bazin, refused to comment this morning about yesterday's events. In a careful communique issued yesterday, Bazin's party chastized the armed forces for "failing to make everyone respect the law." Bazin was in meetings today to decide whether to participate in a Namphy-organized election.

Christian Democrat Silvio Claude said, however, that he believed a fair election was impossible under the Government Council and called for its members to resign. A spokesman, Eddy Volel, said, "We have seen an illegal seizure of power by Namphy."

The left-of-center party of Gerard Gourgue, a human rights activist, charged in a statement, "The {Government Council} wants a controlled election to allow those who don't want change to take power." Few observers, however, believe Namphy wishes to remain as head of state.

A clause in the recently approved constitution permitted the old electoral council to bar 13 candidates from the presidential race because of their ties to Jean-Claude Duvalier, deposed Feb. 7, 1986.

Their disqualification left at least two front-runners, Gourgue and Claude, who were unacceptable to many high-ranking officers, many of whom were recruited during the Duvaliers' dictatorship.

It appears Namphy will try to hold an election including the Duvalierist candidates, which could prompt Gourgue and Claude to boycott. Gourgue and Claude had been expected to receive the majority vote among Haiti's politically volatile poor population.