ariel henry haiti
Prime Minister Ariel Henry was sworn in as Haiti’s new leader during a ceremony in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, on July 20, 2021. (VALERIE BAERISWYL AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES)

NEW YORK — After months of speculation and allegations that he played a role in the assassination of Haiti’s late president Jovenel Moïse, interim Prime Minister Ariel Henry last week denied involvement.

“What I know is that I have not been part of that plot of the assassination of the president and I’m looking for justice to be done,” Henry said, in an exclusive interview with The Miami Herald published Feb. 13. 

For months, political opponents and some observers have alleged Henry was involved in either the plot or its aftermath. Last week, a recorded conversation emerged of Garry Orelien, the former judge leading the assassination inquiry, saying the prime minister helped coordinate the assassination.

Since then, multiple government officials, including Henry himself, have denied the allegations that Henry played a role in the July 7 assassination

The attempts to accuse Henry are “desperate maneuvers” to thwart the ongoing investigation, Foreign Affairs Minister Jean Victor Geneus said in a diplomatic letter dated Feb. 10. 

Henry’s connection to the assassination stems from a Haitian police investigative report, which found that suspect and fugitive Joseph Felix Badio, who used to work in intelligence for Haiti’s justice ministry, called Henry twice in the wee hours of the morning after the murder took place. 

Henry said in the Herald interview that he does not remember talking to Badio and that he had no knowledge of the assassination plot. “Those who are involved have to be captured,” he said, calling for justice. 

Sam is a reporter for The Haitian Times and a 2020 Report for America corps member. He has covered Haiti and its diaspora since 2018. His work has also appeared in USA Today, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and Haiti Liberte. Sam can be reached at sam@haitiantimes.com or on Twitter @sambojarski.

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