PORT-AU-PRINCE: Six people were killed and at least five others were wounded Sunday during demonstrations across Haiti protesting allegations of embezzlement from a Venezuelan program that provided the country with subsidized oil, police said.
President Jovenel Moise called for dialogue with opposition groups that are seeking his resignation for failing to investigate corruption.
Thousands of Haitians marched Sunday to the National Palace in the capital, calling for a probe into the spending of $3.8 billion Haiti received as part of the regional Petrocaribe program.
Clashes with police erupted after protesters blocked streets and set fire to tires.
A Haitian Senate investigation has alleged embezzlement by at least 14 former officials in former President Michel Martelly’s administration, but no one has been charged. There were reports of clashes in smaller protests across the country.
Four people were wounded in clashes in San Marcos, northeast of the capital, and dozens were arrested, police said.
Police said they deployed more than 3,000 officers in the capital, the city of Cap-Haitien and smaller cities and towns.
Starting in 2005, Venezuela offered discounted crude with extremely lenient repayment terms to countries around Central American and the Caribbean.