Haiti: hearings began for the assassination of Jovenel Moise

Almost two months after the assassination of the president of Haiti, Jovenel Moise, the judicial hearings of the case began, after the successive resignations of the assigned judges, who claimed to have been threatened and claimed that they were not given security. The hearings began with a statement from the president’s former security chief which was held behind closed doors and no further details were disclosed. According to the National Network for the Defense of Human Rights in Haiti, the testimony is relevant since Moise was “delivered” by his security officers, who were in charge of ensuring the security of the president, who was murdered on July 7 at his home. The police have not yet released the images from the surveillance camera of the presidential residence.

Threatened judges

The judicial process is in charge of the Magistrate Gary Orelien, who led the investigation following the resignation of Mathieu Chanlatte, who resigned over safety concerns. Orelien is criticized by several Haitian public figures who describe him as “inexperienced” in being at the forefront of the assassination case.

However, prior to Orelien’s appointment, three judges had already resigned: Carl Henri Destin, who wrote the first report after the murder of Moise; Clément Noel, who resigned after reporting that he had received death threats; and the most recent, Mathieu Chanlatte, who left office on August 13, who had previously warned that he did not have a guard assigned to guarantee his safety and that of his family.

The day before Chanlatte’s resignation, the death of the judicial secretary who was going to assist him in the investigation was known, for the Association of Haitian Registrars it was a murder, while several Haitian personalities pointed out that the death of the judicial official constituted a form of intimidation.

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So far the case has 44 detainees: 18 Colombians, two Americans of Haitian origin and 12 policemen. Among them is the alleged mastermind, Emmanuel Sanon, 63, a Haitian doctor based in Florida, United States, who allegedly organized the operation to be sworn in as president. Six other people are fugitives from justice, including the former Supreme Court judge, Wendelle coq, and former Senator John Joel Joseph

Moise was assassinated at his residence on July 7. The Caribbean country has not had a parliament since January 2020. Last month, President Ariel Henry announced that the elections that were scheduled for September 26 were postponed to November and the second round will be in January 2022.

Haiti today

While the health crisis worsened with the earthquake of August 14 that devastated the southern area of ​​Haiti. More than two thousand people died and about 12 thousand were injured. The earthquake also destroyed about 60,000 homes and at least 25 sanitary infrastructures, increasing the influx to the health centers that were left standing.

Vaccinations against covid-19 are progressing slowly, of the 11 million inhabitants that the country has, only more than three thousand completed the immunization scheme and about 25 thousand people were inoculated with the first dose. Thousands of families live together in the makeshift shelters for people who lost their homes after the earthquake, crowded together, without masks and with little access to drinking water.


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