Who assassinated the Haitian president, and why? Here’s what we know so far

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Yamiche Alcindor:

Moise was a polarizing president.

In the last few months, his actions sparked massive protests around the country. During his term, gang violence and kidnappings skyrocketed. UNICEF reported that armed gangs control about a third of Port-au-Prince.

And since the violence spiked last September, more than 18,000 people have fled their homes. Moise was elected in 2016, but didn’t take office until the following year. He said his five-year term was supposed to end in 2022. But his critics, including human rights groups and clergy members, insisted that his term was up this past February.

Earlier this year, he dissolved the Parliament, saying most lawmakers’ terms had ended. He also forced three Supreme Court justices into early retirement. Moise pursued sweeping constitutional changes that would increase presidential power. He planned a vote on a referendum, as well as his replacement, in September. That election is in flux.

The United States backed Moise’s timeline. But U.S. officials also criticized what they called his unchecked presidential power.

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