Port-Au-Prince, Haiti - A Haitian photojournalist was shot to death at his home in a violent slum days after he photographed gang members, a UN official said Wednesday.

Jean-Remy Badio, a freelancer, was slain last Friday in the southern Port-au-Prince slum of Martissant, said Fred Blaise, a UN police spokesperson. Blaise said gang members were suspected in the shooting but no arrests have been made.

International press freedom group Reporters Without Borders said Badio apparently was killed by gang members he had photographed days earlier. It said Badio's family had reported receiving threats before his killing.

"Badio's tragic death is a harsh blow for the Haitian media, for whom conditions seemed to have improved during the past year," the Paris-based group said in a statement.

In November, another Haitian photographer was assaulted by a UN police officer while covering a demonstration in Martissant.

The UN mission apologised for the incident and reprimanded the officer.

Rival street gangs have been battling for months in Martissant, among the Caribbean nation's most violent neighbourhoods. Gang members rarely allow themselves to be photographed out of fear of

being identified by police.

It wasn't immediately unclear if Badio, 45, had permission to take the photographs, which haven't been published.

Prime Minister Jacques Edouard Alexis said Tuesday the government had authorised UN peacekeepers to increase patrols in Martissant to clear out the gangs, which flourished after a February 2004 revolt toppled former president Jean-Bertrand

Aristide. - Sapa-AP