NEWFOUNDLAND & LABRADOR – People of different faiths, politicians and police officers have been invited to join the Muslim community in Newfoundland & Labrador as they commemorate the second anniversary of the Quebec mosque shooting that left six Muslims dead, CBC reported.
“We expect anybody who wants to come and join,” said Mansoor Pirzada, president of the Muslim Association of Newfoundland and Labrador.
“It’s going to be a very short meeting. They will express their thoughts, and there will be a short prayer for the people who died and people who are dealing with injuries and everything.”
Two years ago, a Canadian lone gunman opened fire at a mosque in Quebec City on the evening of January 29, 2017, killing six and injuring 19.
Yesterday marked two years since the massacre.
In recent years, the number of Islamophobic hate groups has jumped up in Alberta and some have created militia-like groups.
Statistics Canada reported a 151% spike in police-reported anti-Muslim hate crimes in 2017 following the Quebec mosque attack and the RCMP says far-right extremists have become emboldened in Canada.
“We have seen over the past several years that the hate crimes have increased, tremendously,” Pirzada said.
“Today’s remembrance is to not only remember those who died, but also those who are surviving with this huge trauma.”
Pirzada said the event, held on Tuesday at the Masjid Al Noor on Logy Bay Road, was a chance for all people to show they reject racism and religious intolerance.
“Canada is not the place for hate. Canada is not the place for racism or bigotry,” he said.
“It’s a continuing effort, it’s not just a one-time thing.
“We have to live together, and that’s what we are trying to teach our community at large, and students and schools.” he said.
Canada’s 2011 National Household Survey estimated Muslims in Canada to be around 1,053,945, or about 3.2% of the population, making Islam the second largest religion in the country after Christianity.