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UN Haiti envoy says Joseph will remain prime minister until further notice

View of the harbor and the area around the Champs de Mar, near the Presidential Palace, after Haitian President Jovenel Moise was shot by unidentified assailants at his private residence in Port-au-Prince, Haiti on July 7, 2021. REUTERS / Valerie Baeriswyl

UNITED NATIONS July 8 (Reuters) – UN Special Envoy for Haiti said on Thursday that Prime Minister Claude Joseph will lead the Caribbean nation until an election is held, urging all parties to set aside differences following the assassination of President Jovenel Moise.

Moses’ death has created confusion about who is the legitimate leader of the country of 11 million people who share the island of Hispaniola with the Dominican Republic.

The UN Special Envoy for Haiti, Helen La Lime, said Joseph was responsible and quoted the country’s constitution, adding: “There are certainly tensions. There are certainly people on all sides of this issue who have different interpretations … That is why important for dialogue. “

La Lime almost told reporters in New York that Joseph told her on Wednesday that he intends to stick to a plan to hold a first round of parliamentary and presidential elections on September 26 with a second round in November.

“Stakeholders need to put their disagreements aside and map out a common path forward and overcome this difficult moment in a peaceful way,” La Lime said after practically briefing the UN Security Council at a closed-door meeting.

Moise, 53, was shot dead early Wednesday in his home by what officials said was a command of trained assassins who plunged the poorest country in America deeper into chaos amid political divisions, hunger and widespread gang violence. Read more

La Lime said the Security Council’s discussion focused on a request from Haiti for further security assistance, but added: “Haiti needs to specify exactly what it is they are looking for.”

A UN peacekeeping mission – intended to restore order after an uprising overthrown then-President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 2004 – ended in 2019 with the country still in disarray.

Additional reporting from Doyinsola Oladipo; Clip by Daniel Wallis

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