Americas

Haiti buries its slain president

Funeral proceedings for slain Haitian President Jovenel Moïse took place Friday, as family members, foreign dignitaries and officials gathered to honor the former leader, whose assassination on July 7 in his private residence outside of Port-au-Prince, the capital, left an already beleaguered country in turmoil.

Joshua Lott/The Washington Post

The ceremonies were centered in the northern city of Cap-Haïtien, close to where Moïse was born.

Joshua Lott/The Washington Post

Workers Friday morning prepared for the ceremony, setting out white florals and Haitian flags, as uniformed men carried the coffin to a podium surrounded by white chairs.

Joshua Lott/The Washington Post

Police carry the coffin of slain Haitian President Jovenel Moïse at the start of the funeral at his family home in Cap-Haïtien, Haiti, on Friday.

Associated Press

Associated Press

A man arranges flowers next to the coffin with the body of Moïse during the start of his funeral ceremony.

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

A soldier carries a Haitian national flag before it is placed on Moïse's coffin.

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

The funeral unfolded as tensions in the north sparked fears of more violence. Reports of gunshots heard at the ceremony prompted U.S. and U.N. representatives to cut their trips short amid security concerns.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the U.S. delegation was “safe and accounted for.”

“We are deeply concerned about unrest in Haiti and its critical moment,” she added in a news conference Friday afternoon.

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

In addition to the gunshots, there was unrest outside the Moïse family compound, Israel Jacky Cantave, the former spokesman for the prime minister’s office who attended the funeral told The Washington Post. There was tear gas and black smoke.

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Haitian security forces blocked civilians from entering the site of the funeral.

EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Supporters of Moise were blocked by security forces from attending Moise's funeral outside the former leader's family home in Cap-Haitien, Haiti, on Friday

Matias Delacroix/AP

Matias Delacroix/AP

Matias Delacroix/AP

Protests on Wednesday and Thursday roiled the country’s north, with many people fatigued by the corruption and poverty that have stricken the country demanding answers regarding Moïse’s death.

Matias Delacroix/AP

A police officer abandons his vehicle during a demonstration that turned violent in Cap-Haïtien, Haiti, on Thursday, July 22.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Demonstrations turned violent on Thursday afternoon with protesters shooting into the air, throwing rocks and overturning heavy concrete barricades.

Associated Press

Associated Press

People walk along a street filled with smoke from burning tires during a protest in Cap-Haïtien, Haiti, on July 22.

Reuters

Reuters

Authorities say Moïse was killed by Colombian mercenaries, and more than 20 people have been detained in connection with the plot. But answers remain murky as to who exactly orchestrated the attack on the polarizing president, and why.

Reuters

Known as the “banana man” for his history as a banana exporter, Moïse went into politics in 2015, becoming the presidential candidate for the center-right Haitian Tèt Kale Party. He took office in 2017, and has since come under fire within Haiti and the international community for postponing elections.

Reuters

In this Sunday, Oct. 11, 2015 photo, presidential candidate Moïse, arrives for a campaign meeting in Carrefour, Haiti.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Moïse hugs his wife Martine after being sworn in Port-au-Prince, on Feb. 7, 2017.

Associated Press

Associated Press

In this Feb. 7, 2017 photo, the newly sworn-in Moïse walks with Police Chief Michel-Ange Gedeon past National Police at the National Palace after his inauguration ceremony in Port-au-Prince.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Moïse’s wife Martine made a return to Haiti after being treated in Miami for injuries sustained during the attack on her husband. She thanked Haitians for their support in a letter posted on social media.

“Your moral support gives the presidential family the courage to go through this great pain,” the first lady wrote.

Associated Press

On Friday, as she approached her husband’s casket, her eyes welling with tears, she was met with cries of “justice! justice!"

Associated Press

Haiti's first lady Martine Moïse, wearing a bullet proof vest and her right arm in a sling, arrives at the Toussaint Louverture International Airport, in Port-au-Prince on Saturday, July 17.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Family members and friends offer condolences to first lady Martine Moïse and her children during a funeral vigil for President Moïse in Cap-Haïtien on July 22.

AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Martine Moise is escorted out after a ceremony in remembrance of her husband in Cap-Haïtien, Haiti, on July 22, 2021.

Associated Press

Associated Press

Moïse’s death has heralded an all-too-familiar era of uncertainty in Haitian politics. His presidency was marked by deadly protests and gang violence. Now it’s unclear who will succeed him. This week the country swore in the U.S.-backed neurosurgeon Ariel Henry as its new prime minister. Henry urged unity and vowed to hold legitimate elections in the next 120 days.

Associated Press

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Editing by Benjamin Soloway, Reem Akkad and Chloe Coleman.