In a communique, Interim Prime minister Dr Claude Joseph added the First Lady had also been wounded and was being treated.
Interim Prime Minister Joseph condemned what he called a “hateful, inhumane and barbaric act,” adding that Haiti’s National Police and other authorities had the situation in the Caribbean country under control.
Mr. Moïse’s wife, Martine Moïse, was also shot in the attack, Prime Minister Claude Joseph said in a statement. Her condition was not immediately clear.
“A group of unidentified individuals, some of them speaking Spanish, attacked the private residence of the president of the republic and thus fatally wounded the head of state,” the prime minister said. “The country’s security situation is under the control of the Haitian police and the armed forces of Haiti,” he added, saying that all measures were being taken to protect the nation.
The news rocked the impoverished Caribbean island nation 675 miles southeast of Miami. Haiti has a long history of dictatorships and coups, and democracy has never fully taken root.
Mr. Moïse had been struggling to quell growing public anger over his attempt to hold onto power despite the opposition’s insistence that his term had expired.
The opposition said that Mr. Moïse’s five-year term should have ended on Feb. 7, five years to the day since his predecessor, Michel Martelly, stepped down. When Mr. Moïse refused to leave office, thousands of Haitians took to the streets, setting trash and tires on fire as they demanded his resignation.
In response, the government announced the arrest of 23 people, including a top judge and a senior police officer, who the president said had tried to kill him and overthrow the government.
“The goal of these people was to make an attempt on my life,” President Moïse said at the time. “That plan was aborted.”
Mr. Moïse insisted that he had one more year to serve, because his term did not begin until a year after the vote that brought him to the top office. He argued that accusations of electoral fraud had led to that delay.
The killing late Tuesday comes amid deepening political and economic stability and a spike in gang violence.