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Quebec Shooting Sentence Leaves Muslims ‘Astonished and Very Upset’

  • “It’s not anger that we feel. It’s disappointment. We don’t want anyone to feel the pain that we feel, the disappointment that we feel.”
  • Hassan Guillet, ambassador for Islamic Relief Canada, said he understand how the judge came to his sentence, but that gives little comfort to the community.

QUEBEC – As the scars of the shooting that killed six Muslims in a Quebec mosque remain unhealed, the sentence laid against the shooter has left Muslim shocked, astonished, and very upset, Global News reported.

“You can see from the faces in front of you that we are in total shock,” said Quebec Islamic cultural center president Boufeldja Benabdallah.

“We will release a statement in the coming days once we have taken the time to let this absolute shock pass.”

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.

Alexandre Bissonnette, the man responsible for the Quebec City mosque shooting, has been sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 40 years.

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The judge said Bissonnette acted with “calculation, determination and in cold blood,” adding he held racist beliefs and the crime was precipitated by “visceral hate for immigrants.”

“We were wishing to have this peace of mind and to allow these widows and these orphans start their lives,” Hassan Guillet, ambassador for Islamic Relief Canada, said.

Guillet said Bissonnette’s actions destroyed the lives of many people.

“I saw Alexandre Bissonnette’s parents in the courtroom and they were just as destroyed, as demolished, like us.”

Many of the people who were present during the shooting are still traumatized, live in fear, and some are unable to work because of the terror they feel.

Quebec shooting mosque survivor, Aymen Derbali, 42, was one of more than 50 people attending evening prayers when the shooting started which left him paralyzed from the chest down.

“I was disappointed and surprised,” said Derbali, who is now in a wheelchair after being hit by seven bullets that night.

Quebec is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada. The region is Canada’s largest province by area and its 2nd-largest administrative division; only the territory of Nunavut is larger.

It’s historically and politically considered to be part of Central Canada, with Ontario. Quebec is the 2nd-most populous province of Canada, after Ontario.

Quebec is unique among the provinces in its overwhelmingly Roman Catholic population, though recently with low church attendance. The 2001 census showed the population to be 1.5% Muslim.