Assassinated Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was accused of being a dictator who was “among the worst in recent memory” — and had recently warned of a planned coup and attempt on his life.
Moïse — the 53-year-old leader shot dead Wednesday in his home by “mercenaries” claiming to be DEA agents — had been ruling by decree for more than two years after the country failed to hold elections, which led to Parliament being dissolved.
Just last month, the US condemned the systematic violation of human rights, fundamental freedoms and attacks on the press in Haiti.
Opposition leaders had repeatedly demanded he step down — and thousands had taken to the streets in numerous demonstrations over recent years.
In February, he rounded up 23 opponents, claiming that they planned to kill him.
His morbid premonition came true Wednesday in a hit that interim leader Claude Joseph called “hateful, inhumane and barbaric” — words that many of Moïse’s opponents would have said were equally fit to describe his leadership.
But his assassination also came amid a huge spike in gang violence, including kidnappings for ransom — some even tied to the administration.
The violence only added to the anger in a country where 60 percent of the population makes less than $2 a day.
His death also came during yet more political upheaval in the nation, which in the coming months was to have elections for president, a new parliament and local government officials.
Just a day before the attack, he had announced his new prime minister, Henry.
Henry was to replace Joseph, who had been in the position just three months, and who on Wednesday after Moïse’s death said he had taken control of the nation after the “hateful, inhumane and barbaric act.”
This long list of political opponents and protesters both internationally and domestically would suggest he had no shortage of enemies. However, no suspects or motives have so far been given for his murder.
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