The Dominican Republic is rocked by a crime against a high-ranking politician. The country’s environment minister was shot dead – apparently by a longtime friend.

In the Dominican Republic, the country’s environment minister has been killed under mysterious circumstances. Orlando Jorge Mera was shot dead during a meeting at his office in the capital, Santo Domingo. This was confirmed on Monday by the spokesman for the Caribbean state’s government, Homero Figueroa, in a video speech. According to the information available so far, the alleged perpetrator is a personal friend of the deceased minister. He has already been arrested.

The case is mysterious because there is no information at all on the motive of the alleged perpetrator and the two men have probably been friends for a very long time. The alleged perpetrator and the victim have known each other since childhood, several media reports.

Dominican Republic is shocked by the bloody deed

“On behalf of the government and the President of the Republic, Luis Abinader, we express our deepest condolences to the family,” said government spokesman Figueroa. Jorge Mera, 55, had been in office for less than two years.

As the “Guardian” reports, Ministry employees are said to have heard seven shots. Employees of the authority would have reported this to journalists. The BBC says “at least six shots” were heard.

The victim comes from a politically powerful family, Jorge Mera’s father was once the country’s president and he himself was a co-founder of the “Modern Revolutionary Party” (PRM) in the Dominican Republic, which has existed since 2014. He took up the position of Environment Minister in August 2020.

He leaves behind a wife, who is the Dominican Republic’s ambassador to Brazil, and two sons. The bereaved confirmed that the alleged perpetrator and the victim were childhood friends. “Our family forgives the person who did this,” the BBC quoted the family as saying. A trait of Jorge Mera is said to have been not holding grudges.

Sources: “The Guardian”, BBC / with material from dpa