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presidential assassination

Haitian police chief says 4 suspects in Moïse's assassination have been killed

Four people suspected of assassinating Haitian President Jovenel Moïse early Wednesday morning were shot and killed by police on Wednesday night, Léon Charles, chief of the Haitian National Police, said.

Two other suspects have been arrested, Charles said, and three police officers held hostage by the suspects have been freed. 

Moïse, 53, was gunned down in his Port-au-Prince home by assailants that Haitian Ambassador to the United States Bocchit Edmond said were dressed as U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents and speaking English and Spanish. He described the assassination as being "well orchestrated" and carried out by "foreign mercenaries and professional killers." Moïse's wife, first lady Martine Moïse, was wounded in the attack, and is now receiving medical treatment in Florida. She is in stable but critical condition. 

Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the world, and is dealing with an increase in gang violence, high inflation, and daily protests. In January 2020, Moïse dissolved parliament and ruled by decree, and opponents accused him of becoming an authoritarian. Claude Joseph, who announced Moïse's death to the country, is serving as Haiti's interim prime minister; Moïse had dismissed Joseph, and was set to install Ariel Henry as the Haitian prime minister on Wednesday.