Quebec City: Six people died and eight were injured after gunmen opened fire at a Quebec City mosque. The Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec, which is also known as the grand mosque of Quebec, had already been the target of hate: a pig’s head was left on the doorstep last June during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.
The attack comes as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has vowed to open its arms wide to Muslims and refugees after US President Donald Trump’s controversial immigration ban Friday sparked travel chaos and outrage around the world.
Trudeau reacted to Trump’s visa ban for people from seven Muslim-majority countries by tweeting on Saturday, “To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength (hash)WelcomeToCanada.”
Canada will offer temporary residence permits to people stranded in the country as a result of Trump’s order, the immigration ministry said Sunday.
“Let me assure those who may be stranded in Canada that I will use my authority as minister to provide them with temporary residency if needed as we have done in the past,” Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen said at a news conference.
Trump has suspended the arrival of all refugees to the US for at least 120 days and barred entry for 90 days to people from seven Muslim-majority countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
Hussen, who is of Somali origin, did not condemn the US measure but stressed that Canada would continue to pursue an immigration policy based on “compassion” while at the same time protecting the security of its citizens.
“We welcome those fleeing persecution, terror and war,” he said, echoing a welcoming Twitter post by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Saturday.
According to the latest Canadian census, from 2011, one out of five people in the country are foreign-born.
Canada has welcomed more than 39,670 Syrian refugees between November 2015 and early January 2017, according to government figures.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday condemned a Quebec City shooting as a “terrorist attack” after gunmen opened fire at a mosque there, killing at least five.
“We condemn this terrorist attack on Muslims in a center of worship and refuge,” Trudeau said. “Muslim-Canadians are an important part of our national fabric, and these senseless acts have no place in our communities, city and country.”
With AFP inputs