Acting Prime Minister Claude Joseph ruled Haiti with police and military support, despite Moïse announcing his replacement a day before he was assassinated. Joseph and his allies argue that the designated successor, Ariel Henry, was never sworn in, but he has pledged to work with him and Joseph Lambert, the leader of Haiti’s inactive Senate.
A statement was released by the Core Group, which includes ambassadors to Haiti from Canada, Germany, Brazil, Spain, the United States, France and the European Union, as well as representatives of the United Nations and the Organization of American States.
The group called for the creation of a “consensual and inclusive government”.
“To this end, he strongly encourages the Prime Minister designate Ariel Henry to continue the mission entrusted to him to form such a government,” said the group.
He also demanded that “all political, economic and civil society actors in the country fully support the authorities in their efforts to restore security.”
U.S. officials could not immediately be reached for comment. A UN spokesperson declined to comment except to say that the organization is part of the group that issued the statement, while an OAS spokesperson said: “For the at the moment, there is nothing more to say than what the statement says. “
Henry and Joseph’s spokespersons did not immediately return the messages for comment.
Robert Fatton, a Haitian political expert at the University of Virginia, said the statement is very confusing, especially after the UN representative said Joseph was in charge.
“No more confusion in a very confusing and confusing situation,” he said.
Moïse was killed on July 7 by gunmen who raided his private home in an attack that authorities said involved Haitians, Haitian Americans and former Colombian soldiers.
The question of who should take over has been complicated by the fact that Haiti’s parliament has not functioned because elections have not taken place and the terms of most members have expired. And the president of the Supreme Court recently passed away from COVID-19.
A day after the assassination, US State Department spokesman Ned Price noted that Joseph was the incumbent and was acting prime minister before the assassination. “We continue to work with Claude Joseph as such,” he said.
On July 11, a delegation of representatives from the United States Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of State and the National Security Council visited Haiti. They reviewed critical infrastructure, spoke with the Haitian National Police, and met Joseph, Henry and Lambert in a joint meeting.
The Canadian Embassy in Haiti and Global Affairs Canada did not immediately respond to requests for comment.