15 Sep. 2021 16:29
The assassination of the Haitian president remains a mystery. Clarification is still not in sight. Now the public prosecutor decided to indict the interim prime minister Ariel Henry – but he throws out the chief prosecutor without further ado.
After the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, the public prosecutor’s office has brought charges against Interim Prime Minister Ariel Henry. This emerges from a letter from the public prosecutor to the responsible judge, from which the media reported unanimously on Tuesday. Henry was also forbidden to leave the country in a further letter to the immigration authorities of the Caribbean state.
The latter letter – which was circulated on social media, the authenticity of which could not initially be confirmed – states that there are serious allegations against Henry for Moïse’s murder. What exactly he was accused of was initially unclear.
Prime Minister dismisses prosecutor
A few hours after the two letters from Public Prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude became known, Henry’s office announced that Claude had been replaced. In a corresponding letter from Henry, dated Monday and circulated by the Haitian media on Tuesday, Claude’s dismissal is justified with a “serious administrative error”.
The 53-year-old Moïse was ambushed and shot dead by a heavily armed commando in his residence on the night of July 7th. His wife Martine was shot in the process, but survived. According to police, Colombian mercenaries carried out the murder. A Haitian doctor who lived in the United States and an ex-official of the Haitian Justice Department are said to be behind it. There have been numerous arrests, but the case has not yet been resolved.
A few days ago, local media had reported that investigators had invited Henry to comment on phone calls on the night of the attack, which he is said to have had with one of the alleged backers. On Saturday, without addressing the allegations directly, Henry denounced on Twitter diversionary maneuvers that he said were intended to create confusion and hamper the judiciary.
Power struggle in Haiti
Moïse had named Henry less than 36 hours before his death as the seventh head of government in his term of office. Henry and his cabinet were sworn in several weeks later on July 20 after a power struggle for office. Since Haiti has not had a quorate parliament since the beginning of 2020, the 71-year-old ex-interior minister and neurosurgeon could not be constitutionally confirmed in office. Presidential and parliamentary elections were planned for September 26th in America’s poorest country. According to media reports, these will now be postponed to November.
Some investigators in the Moïse case have said they have received death threats and are therefore in hiding. The judge originally responsible also resigned a month ago – he gave personal reasons. Local media recently reported on power struggles in the government – especially between Henry and Justice Minister Rockfeller Vincent.
more on the subject – Haiti: between insurrection and invasion
(rt / dpa)