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Under scrutiny in murder inquiry, Haiti’s PM receives international backing By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Haiti’s Prime Minister Ariel Henry is seen at the signing ceremony for the “Political Agreement to a peaceful, effective and managed interim period”, in Port-au-Prince (Haiti). September 11, 2021. REUTERS/Ralph Tedy Er

(Reuters) – A group of leading Haiti-based diplomats met with Prime Minister Ariel Henry and said it backed his efforts to solve the country’s political crisis, an apparent vote of confidence as he faces off accusations of links to the slaying of President Jovenel Moise.

A public prosecutor said on Friday phonecall records showed Henry had spoken twice with the suspected mastermind behind Moise’s killing just hours after it took place on July 7.

Henry, who denies he had anything to do with the murder, this week fired the prosecutor, who had sought to have him charged as a suspect, as well as the justice minister Henry is a retired neurosurgeon who was formerly a moderate politician. He dismissed the allegations as politically motivated.

In a late Wednesday statement, the Core Group of Western diplomats and Organization of American States representatives said that it supported Henry’s efforts to create “a inclusive government” and speed up the normal functioning of democracy institutions via elections.

The country was in a state of political and constitutional crisis after power struggles were led by Moise. There are only a few elected representatives left, as a result of the lack of parliamentary or municipal elections.

Henry made the announcement that Haiti’s major political forces had reached an agreement on a transition government. The plan is to take place next year and hold elections as well as a referendum regarding a new constitution.

However, questions about Henry’s links to Moise the assassin have shadowed this news.

Core Group has reiterated its demand for more light to be shed on this killing. Rights activists have called for the collapse of the justice system. However, similar calls to justice regarding Port-au-Prince’s massacres over recent years did not lead to any arrests nor convictions.

After receiving death threats, several judicial officers involved in the Moise slaying investigation went into hiding. The original judge who was assigned the case had to recuse himself.

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