May 21, 2024

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Haiti: Fritz Bélizaire appointed Prime Minister

2 min read

Haiti’s newly installed transitional council chose a little-known former sports minister as the Caribbean country’s prime minister Tuesday as part of its monumental task of trying to establish a stable new government amid stifling violence.

Fritz Bélizaire was chosen in a surprise move to replace current interim Prime Minister Michel Patrick Boisvert, gaining the support of four of the seven voting members on the nine-member panel but with other panel members saying they were unfamiliar with Bélizaire.

Bélizaire himself was not present at the announcement.

The council also chose former presidential candidate Edgard Leblanc Fils as the president of the panel.

“This is a very good choice for prime minister,” Fils said of Bélizaire during a brief speech to nearly two dozen attendees.

“The important thing for us is this will, this determination to go beyond divisions, to overcome conflicts and to reach a consensus.”

He said the council met Monday with army and police officials to talk about Haiti’s security crisis and how best to resolve it.

“We are publicly recognizing the suffering,” he said of the population.

After the brief announcement, which was made nearly two hours after the event was supposed to start, the council went behind closed doors again to talk about their choices for Cabinet but it was not expected to be announced Tuesday.

Haitians remain divided over whether they believe a transitional government can help calm a troubled country whose capital has been under siege since gangs launched coordinated attacks on Feb. 29.

Gang members have burned police stations, opened fire on the main international airport that remains closed since early March and broke into Haiti’s two biggest prisons, releasing more than 4,000 inmates.

The country’s biggest seaport also remains largely paralized by gang violence

By Agencies

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