(Bloomberg) -- Embattled Haiti Prime Minister Ariel Henry addressed for the first time allegations that he had been in contact with one of the suspected killers of President Jovenel Moise the night of the murder.
A statement released by the Prime Minister’s office Thursday, acknowledged that Henry had received “countless calls” as news emerged about Moise’s assassination July 7, but it stopped short of saying he had been in touch with Joseph Felix Badio, a suspect in the case.
The Prime Minister’s office said Henry had received a number of phone calls that night inquiring “about his situation and the steps taken to ensure his physical integrity.”
“It is therefore difficult, nowadays, after all the consequences, without referring to phone records, to specify the names of all those who called, or even the nature of their conversations,” the office said.
Earlier this week, Port-au-Prince Prince Prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude said that Henry spoke with Badio for seven minute minutes while he was in the vicinity of the murder site, and he asked a judge to indict the prime minister. Badio, a former Minister of Justice employee, has been in hiding since officials ordered his arrest in July in connection with the crime.
Read More: Haiti PM Replaces Prosecutor Who Named Him in Moise Murder Probe
The Prime Minister’s office said Henry’s political enemies were using the calls to make “serious and unfounded insinuations” and to stir up popular discontent in a nation gripped by violence and unrest. Claude and the Minister of Justice Rockfeller Vincent were both replaced this week.
More than 40 people have been detained in connection with Moise’s murder but Henry has maintained that the true intellectual authors remain at large.
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