Cornwall Imam says Quebec attack was an attack on all Canadians

Nick Seebruch
Cornwall Imam says Quebec attack was an attack on all Canadians
The Islamic Centre on Second Street (Nick Seebruch/ TC Media).

CORNWALL, Ontario – In reaction to the attack at a mosque in Quebec City by a right-wing extremist that took the lives of six people, Imam Usmaan Alam says that we must learn that an attack on one Canadian is an attack on all and that political disagreements are not worth killing over.

"You always thought this was something that could happen south of the 49 or in the Middle East," said Alam, who was born and raised in the Cornwall area. "You never thought it would happen here."

The Imam said that fear was felt by those at prayers Monday morning.

"People were very fearful and speechless," he said. "Many people in the community have offered condolences however and they have been very kind."

Alam also commented that politics should not be a reason for violence and that violence should not be allowed do divide our community.

"Politics is no reason to harm someone else," he said. "Those six people, we pray for their families. When he shot those bullets they had far reaching consequences and challenged our unity as a community. We have to accept that this is an attack on all Canadians. Parents are going to have to tell their children that a brown kid is just as Canadian as a white one."

The attack occurred around 7:30 p.m on Sunday, Jan. 29 in Quebec City at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Quebec.

The CBC has reported that the shooter is a 27-year-old Laval University student who was known in the university community as a supporter of Far Right French politician Marie Le Pen and for his anti-feminist views. The shooter is currently in police custody awaiting a court appearance.

In a show of support and protection for Cornwall’s Jami Masjid Zakariya Islamic centre, the Cornwall Community Police Service had stationed a marked police vehicle outside the centre late Monday afternoon.

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