US Insists Elections In Haiti Need To Happen This Year

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U.S. President Joe Biden, center, speaks during a meeting in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Monday, July 12, 2021. Photographer: Sarah Silbiger/UPI/Bloomberg via Getty Images

By NAN Staff Writer

News Americas, WASHINGTON, D.C., Tues. July 13, 2021: The U.S. yesterday reiterated that free and fair legislative and presidential elections need to happen in Haiti this year despite the assassination of the country’s president that has thrown the Republic in further chaos.

The U.S. State Department said Monday that the elections need to happen “pursuant to the Haitian constitution.”

We continue to support the Haitian people and their constitution, knowing that the constitution needs to be an enduring framework for what happens next. And so yes, in our view there need to be free and fair elections,” Ned Price, the Department’s spokesperson said at a press briefing yesterday. “They need to happen this year – legislative elections, presidential elections – pursuant to the Haitian constitution. And that is precisely why we have continued to support them.”

But Price noted that the US’ immediate focus is determining the assistance that Haiti may need with this investigation.

“We believe our focus should be assisting the Haitian Government with navigating the investigation into the assassination of President Moise, determining who is culpable, and supporting the Haitian Government as it seeks justice in this case,” he stated. “And FBI and DHS officials have also traveled to Port-au-Prince. They’re working to determine what assistance the United States can provide to the Haitian Government in its time of need.”

Earlier, speaking at the release of a report, U.S. Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken reiterated that point. He said the United States remains in close consultations with Haitian and international partners to support the Haitian people in the aftermath of the assassination. And he urged the country’s political leaders “to bring the country together around a more inclusive, peaceful, and secure vision and pave the road toward free and fair elections this year.” 

This as U.S. President Joe Biden told reporters also on Monday that his administration was “closely watching” developments in Haiti.

“The people of Haiti deserve peace and security, and Haiti’s political leaders need to come together for the good of their country,” Biden said.

President Moise was shot dead early on Wednesday, July 7, 2021 at his Port-au-Prince home by what Haitian authorities describe as a unit of assassins including 26 Colombians and two Haitian-Americans. Haitian police said on Sunday they had arrested another suspect and Haitian American who they claimed to be one of the master minds of the assassination plot.

Moise had set September as the date for elections.