Thousands of people in Haiti’s capital and other major cities organised new protests to demand safer streets, more affordable goods and the resignation of Prime Minister Ariel Henry.
At least one person died in Port-au-Prince, and Zenith FM reporter Youly Destine reported getting hit by a rubber bullet while live on the radio. At least two other people were also injured as police fired into the air to disperse crowds, according to a Miami Herald correspondent on the scene.
Unconfirmed reports of injuries were also reported in the city of Jérémie in the Grand’Anse department, where businesses were looted and bursts of automatic gunfire were reported as protesters clashed with police.
The occasional crack of gunfire mixed with the shouting and clapping of protesters as they marched through streets blocked by rocks, trucks and burning tires.
“Ariel, you have to go. Go Ariel, Go Ariel,” a crowd in the capital of Port-au-Prince yelled.
One protester held up a sign that read, “DOWN WITH MISERY” while another yelled expletives at the government as he lamented a severe lack of jobs.
A man carries a sign with a message that reads in Creole, ‘The people don’t want you Ariel’. Photo / AP
“We need money to survive,” Ronald Jean said.
Other protests paralysed coastal cities in Haiti’s northern regions and southern regions including Port-de-Paix, Petit-Goâve and Jérémie with police firing tear gas to disperse the crowds.
Haitians have organised a growing number of protests amid an increase in gang related kidnappings and killings, a spike in the prices of basic goods and a severe lack of fuel amid an inflation rate that has hit 30 per cent.