Baku, July 9, AZERTAC
A heavily armed commando unit that assassinated Haitian President Jovenel Moise this week comprised 26 Colombians and two Haitian Americans, authorities said on Thursday, as the hunt went on for the masterminds of the brazen killing, according to Reuters.
Moise, 53, was fatally shot early on Wednesday at his home by what officials said was a group of foreign, trained killers, pitching the poorest country in the Americas deeper into turmoil amid political divisions, hunger and widespread gang violence.
Colombian Defence Minister Diego Molano said initial findings indicated that Colombians suspected of taking part in the assassination were retired members of his country's armed forces, and pledged to support the investigations in Haiti.
Police tracked the suspected assassins on Wednesday to a house near the scene of the crime in Petionville, a northern, hillside suburb of the capital, Port-au-Prince.
A firefight lasted late into the night and authorities detained a number of suspects on Thursday.
Police Chief Leon Charles paraded 17 men before journalists at a news conference late on Thursday, showing several Colombian passports, plus assault rifles, machetes, walkie-talkies and materials including bolt cutters and hammers.
"Foreigners came to our country to kill the president," Charles said, noting there were 26 Colombians and two Haitian Americans.
He revealed that 15 of the Colombians were captured, as were the Haitian Americans. Three of the assailants were killed and eight were still on the run, Charles said.
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