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Slain Haitian President’s Widow Her Husband was Targeted and Killed for Political Reasons.



The wife of assassinated Haitian President Jovenel Moise has spoken for the first time since gunmen stormed the couple’s home in Port-au-Prince.

She said the attack that killed her husband happened “in the blink of an eye”.

In an audio message posted on her official Twitter account on Saturday, Martine Moise called on Haiti not to “lose its way” after the attack that left her critically injured.

The widow of the slain Haitian President accused shadowy enemies of organizing his assassination to stop democratic change, as a struggle for power intensified in the Caribbean nation.

Haiti has been reeling since Moïse was gunned down early Wednesday at his home in Port-au-Prince.

Haitian authorities said foreign, trained assassins comprising 26 Colombians and two Haitian Americans carried out the assassination. Colombian media suggested the Colombians may have been hired as security for the president.

“I am alive, thanks to God,” Martine Moise said in Creole in the audio message, which Haiti’s minister of culture and communications, Pradel Henriquez, confirmed to the AFP news agency as being authentic.“I am alive but I have lost my husband Jovenel,” she added.

Jovenel Moise, 53, was killed by armed gunmen in the early hours of Wednesday in what Haitian authorities said was “a highly coordinated attack by a highly trained and heavily armed group”.

Martine Moïse, who was wounded in the attack, said her husband was targeted for political reasons.”You know who the president was fighting against,” she said in a recording released on Twitter, without naming anyone.”They sent mercenaries to kill the president at his home with members of his family because of roads, water, electricity and referendum, as well as elections at the end of the year so that there is no transition in the country.”

The late president, who spoke of dark forces at play behind years of unrest — rival politicians and oligarchs angry about his attempts to clean up government contracts and politics — had proposed a referendum to change Haiti’s constitution.

The referendum, scheduled for Sept. 26 along with presidential and legislative elections, could abolish the prime minister’s position, reshape the legislative branch and strengthen the presidency.

Moïse’s killing has clouded those plans and led to political disarray in Haiti’s government, which has appealed for troops from the United States and the United Nations.

Ariel Henry, a neurosurgeon who was named prime minister by the late president on Monday, told Newsmen that he was now the highest authority in Haiti, not interim Prime Minister Claude Joseph, and that he was forming a government.

“After the president’s assassination, I became the highest, legal and regular authority because there was a decree nominating me,” he said in a phone interview Friday.

See also Haiti asks UN, US For Military Support,After President’s Assassination

Henry said his government would create a new electoral council — given that the previous one was considered too partisan — which would determine new dates for elections.

“I don’t know what date they will be, all I know is that we cannot take too long to do these elections. We need to do them as soon as possible,” he said.But Henry has yet to be sworn in, and Joseph — who was named interim prime minister in April — has stayed put, spearheading the response to the assassination, appealing to the U.S. for support and declaring a 15-day state of emergency.

The power struggle has created confusion over who is the legitimate leader.

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