World

Witnesses: Pre-election violence flaring up in Haiti slum as politically-aligned gangs feud

  • In this Oct. 17, 2015 photo, presidential candidate Moise Jean Charles, of the Platform Pitit Dessalines political party, is carried by supporters as he campaigns in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. This year’s unprecedented three rounds of balloting will pick Haiti’s next president, two-thirds of the Senate, the entire Chamber of Deputies and local offices. The Oct. 25 vote is expected to clear the sprawling presidential field for a runoff Dec. 27 between the top two finishers. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)

    In this Oct. 17, 2015 photo, presidential candidate Moise Jean Charles, of the Platform Pitit Dessalines political party, is carried by supporters as he campaigns in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. This year’s unprecedented three rounds of balloting will pick Haiti’s next president, two-thirds of the Senate, the entire Chamber of Deputies and local offices. The Oct. 25 vote is expected to clear the sprawling presidential field for a runoff Dec. 27 between the top two finishers. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)  (The Associated Press)

  • In this Oct. 17, 2015 photo, supporters greet presidential candidate Moise Jean Charles, of the Platform Pitit Dessalines political party, as he campaigns in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. This year’s unprecedented three rounds of balloting will pick Haiti’s next president, two-thirds of the Senate, the entire Chamber of Deputies and local offices. The Oct. 25 vote is expected to clear the sprawling presidential field for a runoff Dec. 27 between the top two finishers. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)

    In this Oct. 17, 2015 photo, supporters greet presidential candidate Moise Jean Charles, of the Platform Pitit Dessalines political party, as he campaigns in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. This year’s unprecedented three rounds of balloting will pick Haiti’s next president, two-thirds of the Senate, the entire Chamber of Deputies and local offices. The Oct. 25 vote is expected to clear the sprawling presidential field for a runoff Dec. 27 between the top two finishers. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)  (The Associated Press)

  • Presidential candidate Jovenel Moise, from the PHTK political party, gives a press conference in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Monday, Oct. 19, 2015. This year’s unprecedented three rounds of balloting will pick Haiti’s next president, two-thirds of the Senate, the entire Chamber of Deputies and local offices. The Oct. 25 vote is expected to clear the sprawling presidential field for a runoff Dec. 27 between the top two finishers. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)

    Presidential candidate Jovenel Moise, from the PHTK political party, gives a press conference in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, Monday, Oct. 19, 2015. This year’s unprecedented three rounds of balloting will pick Haiti’s next president, two-thirds of the Senate, the entire Chamber of Deputies and local offices. The Oct. 25 vote is expected to clear the sprawling presidential field for a runoff Dec. 27 between the top two finishers. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery)  (The Associated Press)

Officials say pre-election violence has flared up in a crowded Haitian slum and resulted in the killings of least 15 people, including two pregnant women.

Precise numbers of the dead around sprawling Cite Soleil were hard to pin down. Spokespeople with the Haitian National Police and the U.N. mission did not immediately provide specifics Monday.

Esau Bouchard is a mayor in Cite Soleil. He says 10 people have been killed within the district's boundaries over the last few days and another eight or nine people have been slain on the outskirts.

Neighborhood organizers within the slum say most of the killings were politically motivated and done by politically aligned gangs. Bouchard says gangsters were also killed in shootouts with police.

The violence comes days ahead of presidential elections on Sunday.