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Haiti President Jovenel Moïse assassinated

Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated at home at around 1 a.m. Wednesday by an unidentified group of gunmen, AP reports.

The latest: President Bidenexpressed support for the people of Haiti on Wednesday, saying in a statement: "We condemn this heinous act, and I am sending my sincere wishes for First Lady Moïse’s recovery."

  • "The United States offers condolences to the people of Haiti, and we stand ready to assist as we continue to work for a safe and secure Haiti," Biden added.
  • White House press secretary Jen Psaki said this morning on CNN that the White House and State Department are still gathering details about the situation.

State of play: Moïse's wife, first lady Martine Moïse, is hospitalized, interim Prime Minister Claude Joseph said in a statement Wednesday. The U.S. Embassy in Port-au-prince issued a security alert calling on staff to avoid unnecessary travel in the area.

What they're saying: Joseph condemned what he called an "inhumane and barbaric act," adding: "The country’s security situation is under the control of the National Police of Haiti and the Armed Forces of Haiti. Democracy and the republic will win."

  • Joseph said the "highly coordinated" attack was carried out by a "highly trained and heavily armed group" at around 1 a.m. on July 7. He called on the international community to launch an investigation, and for the United Nations Security Council to hold a meeting on Haiti as soon as possible.
  • "We urge Haitians to show restraint and maintain a peaceful environment over the coming days," Joseph said.

The big picture: The violence comes amid increasing political instability in Haiti and calls for Moïse's removal from office before his term ended. Gang violence has spiked significantly in the capital of Port-au-Prince as the country continues to grapple with poverty and a cycle of delayed election.

Go deeper:Coup claim deepens Haiti's political crisis

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