Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau joined world leaders today in condemning the overnight assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse and expressing Canada’s willingness to help.
Trudeau said in a tweet: “I strongly condemn the shocking assassination of President Moise this morning.” “Canada stands ready to support the Haitian people and provide any help they need.”
According to a statement from the country’s interim prime minister, Claude Joseph, Moise was shot and killed by an unidentified attacker in his private home early on Wednesday morning local time. Joseph said the 53-year-old wife of the president, Martina Moise, was also shot in the attack and is receiving medical treatment.
I strongly condemn the appalling assassination of President Moise this morning. Canada stands ready to support the people of Haiti and provide any help they need.
It is not clear who is responsible for the attack-due to confusion over who will succeed Moise, it is now possible to plunge this poor Caribbean country into a political crisis. After months of unrest and gang violence in the capital, Port-au-Prince, armed groups compete with the police and each other for control of the streets.
After the country’s failure to hold legislative elections, Moyes ruled by decree for more than a year and is pushing for a controversial constitutional reform.
World leaders condemn the assassination
The assassination aroused shock and condemnation from leaders in Latin America, Europe and the United States, while calling on Haiti to remain calm and united.
US President Joe Biden told reporters before boarding the Marine Corps One helicopter that although more information is needed about what happened and the people behind the attack, the president’s murder was “very worrying.”
Colombian President Ivan Duque condemned what he called “cowardice” and expressed solidarity with Haiti. He called on the Organization of American States to carry out an urgent task of “protecting democratic order.”
Other initial reactions reflect concerns about Haiti’s security.
Josep Borrell, the head of EU foreign policy, tweeted that “this crime brings the risk of instability and (a) escalation of violence.”
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter that he was “shocked and saddened by the death of President Moise”.
Haiti faces “difficult times”: Ambassador
Weibert Alsace, Haiti’s ambassador to Canada, said that although the country is facing “difficult times,” he believes Haiti will survive.
“There are reasons not to think that tomorrow will be better,” Alsace said in an interview with Radio Canada. “But we have gone through many difficult times in history, and we have the ability to survive these difficult times.”
Haiti-the poorest country in the Americas with a population of 11 million-has long had close ties with Canada. Haiti is the largest recipient of Canadian development assistance in the region.