As Assassins Closed In, Haiti Leader Pleaded for Help

'Come save my life,' he said in one phone call, according to the 'Miami Herald'
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 20, 2021 7:29 AM CDT
Haiti President's Desperate Plea: 'Come Save My Life'
A 2019 photo of Haiti's Jovenel Moise.   (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery, File)

The Miami Herald is out with a report detailing desperate phone calls made by Haitian President Jovenal Moise as assassins closed in on his house. His pleas for help came too late, however. Coverage and related details:

  • At 1:34am on July 7, Moise called the Haitian National Police Commander. "They are shooting by the house," he said. "Mobilize people."
  • Roughly 10 minutes later, with no sign of help coming, Moise called a man identified in the story as a tactically trained officer with the national police. "I need your assistance, now!" Moise said. "My life is in danger. Come quick; come save my life."

  • Soon, though, the assailants entered the president's house and his bedroom. The story details one last chilling call, this one made by one of the gunmen to an unidentified person while Moise was still alive. The shooter described what Moise looked like, and when the other person confirmed it was the president, the gunman "turned to face the president and shot him without any conversation," the officer tells the newspaper.
  • The details come as the power struggle in Haiti set off by the assassination has apparently been resolved, reports NPR. Ariel Henry, the man Moise had named prime minister days before his death, will officially assume that role and attempt to form a new government. A rival who had seized control in the aftermath of Moises' killing, former Prime Minister Claude Joseph, agreed to step back.
  • The Guardian updates the investigation, with elections minister Mathias Pierre telling the newspaper that "big fishes" who wanted the president dead remain at large. While Florida-based Christian Emmanuel Sanon and former intelligence officer Joseph Felix Badio have been named as prime suspects, Pierre says "more powerful people" were likely behind the plot.
  • Last week, Colombia's police chief (several of the arrested suspects are from Colombia) suggested that Badio gave the order to assassinate Moise, per the Guardian. That raises the possibility it was him on the other end of the last phone call cited by the Herald.
(More Haiti stories.)

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