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 Haitian President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated in an attack on his private residence, the country’s interim prime minister said in a statement Wednesday, calling it a “hateful, inhumane and barbaric act.”

First Lady Martine Moïse was hospitalized following the overnight attack, interim Premier Claude Joseph said.

Mr Joseph said that “all measures had been taken to guarantee the continuity of the state”.

Haiti was already in a precarious political situation before the assassination, having grown increasingly unstable and disgruntled under Moïse. The president ruled by decree for more than two years after the country failed to hold elections and the opposition demanded he step down in recent months.

“The country’s security situation is under the control of the National Police of Haiti and the Armed Forces of Haiti,” Joseph said in a statement from his office. “Democracy and the republic will win.

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In the early morning hours of Wednesday, the streets were largely empty in the Caribbean nation’s capital of Port-au-Prince, but some people ransacked businesses in one area. After the attack, gunshots could be heard throughout the capital.

Joseph said police have been deployed to the National Palace and the upscale community of Pétionville and will be sent to other areas.

Joseph condemned the assassination as a “hateful, inhumane and barbaric act”. He said some of the attackers spoke in Spanish but offered no further explanation.

Moise has faced fierce protests since he took office as president in 2017, with the opposition accusing him this year of seeking to install a dictatorship by overstaying his mandate and becoming more authoritarian – charges he denied.

In addition to presidential, legislative and local elections, Haiti was due to have a constitutional referendum in September after it was twice postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

 

 

Fete Gede, also known as the Festival of the Dead, is a key celebration in Haitian culture. It’s a national holiday centered around Voodoo culture. Haitians across the country join each other in song and dance to celebrate lwa or spirits of Voodoo.

What’s Fet Gede?

Fet Gede (also knows as Fèt Gede or Fète Gede) is like its Haitian celebrators: joyful, resilient, and unordinary. This celebration offers time not only to celebrate death but to face it. Let’s take at the origin of Fet Gede and why it’s important.

Origin

Fete Gede isn’t just a celebration of spirits; it’s also an ode to Haiti’s endurance. Fet Gede originates from the long-standing history of slavery in Haiti.

Before 1804, Haitians were enslaved under French rule. Haiti, or Saint-Domingue as it was known back then, was a violent place for slaves. They lived in dirty conditions and were often mistreated.

Voodoo was an outlet for slaves to stay emotionally healthy and remember their homeland. The practice of Voodoo stems from West Africa and started as far as 6,000 years ago. It‘s an ancient religion that centers around ancestral beliefs.  Enslaved Africans often masked Voodoo rituals under the disguise of Catholic traditions.

In fact, Haitians believe Voodoo is the reason for their freedom. It served as an inspiration for Enslaved Africans to rebel against the French. In a now-famous ceremony called Bois Caïman or Alligator Woods, thousands of Enslaved Africans came together in a Voodoo ritual against the French.

During the ceremony, EnslavedAfricans  leaders were possessed by the lwa spirits. Everyone danced, sang, and prayed that the white men would be defeated. Ultimately the ceremony was successful, as

Haiti is one of the few colonies that won its independence thanks to its slave rebellion.

Voodoo left a significant impression on the Haitian culture. It’s not a surprise that Fet Gede continues to be the most important religious holiday on the national calendar. It brings the community together to bring the dead alive again.

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Significance

As mentioned before, all followers of Voodoo in Haiti celebrate Fet Gede. In Voodoo, it is considered to be an honor to communicate with spirits. The spirits follow and guide followers throughout life.

The significance of spirits is especially crucial for Haitian funerals, and like funerals, Voodoo priests and priestess perform special rituals to summon the spirits.

During Fet Gede, Houngan (priests) or Manbo (priestesses) perform rituals as well. Spirits “mount” or possess followers. There are hundreds of spirits or lwa in Voodoo.

However, Fet Gede is a celebration of the Guédé (Ghede or Gede) family—spirits of the dead.

Date

Haitians celebrate the Gede spirits during the entire month of November. Many cultures consider the early days of November to be the most sacred. Then, the spirits of loved ones can return earthside and advise their family and friends. All Saints’ Day is a Catholic celebration in November to remember the dead, just like Fet Gede.

Fet Gede falls on the same day each year, as people take to the streets on November 2nd to connect with the dead.

Music and dance

Both music and dancing are important expressions of devotion in Voodoo. For the gede to fully possess worshipers, the houn’torguiers or Voodoo drummers play intense music. The fast-paced music and dancing allow the worshipper to lose control of their body. Participants may scream and flail or even faint.

The possessed person can bless the people around him or her. They can connect with the dead, share their stories, or even reveal how they died. Without Voodoo rhythmic dance and beats, the ritual is impossible.

By the time March rolls around, most people are ready for their first vacation of the year. You’ve recovered, both financially, and emotionally from the holidays and the weather is finally starting to pick back up. in short, the Ancestors trying to tell you its time to #TreatYoself

March is often the cheapest time to travel numerous destinations all over the world. Airlines and hotels are starting to feel the post-holiday hit and they’re looking to entice people to visit just before the spring break and summer wave of travellers begin.

From France, Guyana, and even Egypt, here are the best places to travel to this March for less than $350 round-trip!

San Juan, Puerto Rico For As Low As $92 Round-Trip

If you’re looking to round up some of your friends for a quick getaway, then San Juan is the perfect destination as there are plenty of

There are round-trip flights to San Juan from the United States for as low as $95. To no surprise, most of these flights under $100 round-trip leave out of Florida.

But one deal you don’t see too often is Philadelphia to San Juan for less than $100 round-trip. Spirit Airlines and Frontier have round-trip flights to San Juan for just $92 round-trip.  Use March 10 through March 17 as your travel dates in Skyscanner.

Other Deals To San Juan

Port Au Prince, Haiti For As Low As $180 Round-Trip

There are various flights leaving the United States to Port Au Prince for less than $350 round-trip, including Los Angeles, Dallas, Charlotte, Miami, and Minneapolis, according to Skyscanner.

The cheapest flights leave Fort Lauderdale on March 11 and return March 18 on Spirit Airlines for just $180 round-trip.Cheapest places to travel to in march 2020

Cairo, Egypt For $320 Round-Trip

For this deal, you have to be in New York City. Serbia Airlines have round-trip flights for $320 from March 7 through March 19.

There’s a layover in Serbia’s capital city Belgrade according to Skyscanner.

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Georgetown, Guyana For $342 Round-Trip

Located in South America, bordering Brazil and Venezuela is the beautiful country Guyana. We found a rare deal to Georgetown for just $342 round-trip from Florida, according to Skyscanner.  There’s a long layover in Panama City but it’s worth the rare deal.

From Fort Lauderdale, use March 18 through March 26 as your travel dates.Cheapest places to travel to in march 2020

From Miami, flights to Guyana are the same price. The only difference is the dates. Use March 17 through March 24 as your travel dates.

Source: Travel Noire