PORT-AU-PRINCE — As scores of state officials have done before him, Prime Minister Ariel Henry planned to travel to the Pont Rouge monument on Oct. 17 to lay a wreath of flowers for the commemoration of Jean-Jacques Dessalines’s assassination. It was to be a simple gesture Haitians have unanimously recognized with fanfare and good tidings to honor the assassinated revolutionary hero.
But as Henry traveled to the event on the morning of Oct. 17 for the 215th commemoration, he and his entourage heard gunshots, forcing the prime minister to turn around and abandon the wreath laying. An armed gang that goes by Force Revolution G9 Family & Allies reportedly fired the gunshots, but their leader Jimmy “Barbecue” Chérizier rejected the allegation.
“Ariel didn’t make it to Pont Rouge,” Chérizier told The Haitian Times last week. “To shoot someone you have to see him. We were in Pont Rouge, you can’t say we shot at Ariel Henry.”
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