Violence in Haiti: National Palace area paralyzed as shootout between police and gang led by ‘Barbeque’ Charizard

A man walks through a burning street in Port-au-Prince (EFE/Sephroy Clarence)

were on monday intense firing When police clashed for several hours with gang members near the National Palace in the center of the Haitian capital.

Members of armed gangs belonging to the ‘Live Together’ coalition led by powerful people jimmy charizierAka ‘Barbecue’, managed to set fire to an armored vehicle of the National Police in the vicinity of the National Palace.

Local media gave this news At least one police officer was injured in the shooting He and other officers were then forced to flee in an armored vehicle, which was then set on fire.

Two people search for useful parts among burnt cars at a mechanical workshop torched by violence between armed gangs in Port-au-Prince (AP Photo/Odeline Joseph)

Armed gangs that control about 90% of Port-au-Prince recently promised to capture the palace. In March, gangs already tried to storm the building, although without success.

Dozens of people caught in the crossfire in the center of Port-au-Prince, While dozens of others managed to escape. A man who did not want to be named out of fear of his life told the agency AP He remained trapped for five hours until the police rescued him.

“It was the armored car that covered us (so we could leave the area),” he said.

The latest shootings come more than a month after powerful gangs began attacking key government infrastructure. They have set fire to police stations, opened fire at the main international airport, which is closed, and attacked the country’s two largest prisons, freeing more than 4,000 prisoners.

Violence has subsided somewhat in some areas since the attacks began on February 29, but gunshots are still heard daily.

at least 1,554 According to the United Nations, as of March 22, people have died and 826 others have been injured.

People walk next to the remains of vehicles near Rashtrapati Bhavan (Reuters/Ralph Teddy Errol)

The situation comes after a few days of low violence by gangs, with the tense calm broken this morning locally when clashes and shootings between gangs and police returned with more force to the streets of the capital.

Today there was already firing on the Champs de Mars, forcing people to run in all directions to avoid crossfire, in addition to activities in the area.

Also in the Pétion-Ville sector, in the hills of Port-au-Prince, four bodies were found, apparently riddled with bullets.

It is a new escalation in tensions, following a surge in violence in Haiti since late February with gang attacks on institutions, companies, private properties and prisons, resulting in the escape of about 3,600 prisoners, many of whom belong to armed groups. Members and leaders.

A demonstrator displays a Haitian flag during a protest to demand the resignation of the country’s Prime Minister Ariel Henry (AP Photo/Odeline Joseph).

Meanwhile, Haiti awaits the implementation of the Transitional Presidential Council, which will elect a prime minister and pave the way for presidential elections.

When this institution comes into force, the Haitian Prime Minister, Ariel Henry, who is out of the country, will relinquish power, as he himself announced in the early hours of March 12.

(With information from AP and EFE)

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