Alexandre Bissonnette Faces Six Charges of Murder
Canadian Police has said that Quebec mosque attack suspect Alexandre Bissonnette is facing six charges of first-degree murder.
Suspect Calls Police to Surrender
A suspect in a mosque shooting in Quebec called police "to talk about his surrender," a senior police official said on Monday.
The caller was believed to be one of two assailants who opened fire during evening prayers at the Islamic Cultural Center in Quebec City.
The other suspect in the shooting was arrested at the scene.
On Sunday, during the evening prayers at the Quebec City mosque, armed gunmen fired at a crowd of nearly 40 people. Six people were killed and eight wounded in the attack.
The gunmen reportedly yelled “Allahu Akbar” as they fired and police arrested two suspects. The Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned the “cowardly attack”, which came on the same day as he declared the country’s borders open to all seeking refuge from war and civil strife.
Six Dead, Eight Wounded, Say Police
Quebec provincial police say six people are dead and eight were wounded after shots were fired inside a mosque in Canada on Sunday night during evening prayers.
The police said mostly men were gathered inside the Islamic cultural centre of Quebec in the Sainte-Foy neighbourhood when the shooting began just before 8 pm.
They Yelled 'Allahu Akbar' as They Fired: Eye-Witness
A witness told Radio-Canada that two masked individuals entered the Quebec City mosque during prayers on Sunday evening. The assailants shouted “Allahu Akbar” before opening fire, CBC Canada reported.
“There were kids around. There was a three-year-old who was there with his father,” the eye-witness said.
Justin Trudeau Condemns Attack
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau condemned the shooting, which he described as a "terrorist attack on Muslims in a centre of worship and refuge," in a statement.
He said, "Muslim-Canadians are an important part of our national fabric, and these senseless acts have no place in our communities, cities and country."
He offered his condolences to the victims of what he said was a “cowardly attack,” in a separate tweet.
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard tweeted several times on Sunday night denouncing the “barbaric violence” and stating that his government is mobilising to ensure the safety of Quebec city residents.
Act of Terrorism: Police
Police activated the structure of police management (SGPCT), a protocol for regional acts of terrorism.
They’re treating the shooting as a terrorist act.
- Six people have been killed in a shootout in a Quebec City mosque during evening prayers, the mosque’s president said
- Two suspects have been arrested
- Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has condemned the “cowardly attack”
- More than 40 people were reportedly present at the premises at the time of the incident
Quebec police confirmed the shooting at a Quebec mosque in a tweet and police on the scene said there had been fatalities.
"There are many victims... there are deaths," a Quebec police spokesman told reporters.
A police tweet said there are multiple deaths and injuries and that suspects have been arrested.
Increase in Incidents of Islamophobia in Quebec
In June last year, during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a pig’s head was left outside the mosque in Quebec City along with a note “Bon appétit.”
Like France, Quebec has struggled at times to reconcile its secular identity with a rising Muslim population, many of them North African emigrants.
The face-covering, or niqab, became a big issue in the 2015 national Canadian election, especially in Quebec, where the vast majority of the population supported a ban on it at citizenship ceremonies.
Incidents of Islamophobia have increased in Quebec in recent years. In 2013, police investigated after a mosque in the Saguenay region of Quebec was splattered with what was believed to be pig blood.
Two Suspects Arrested
According to local news reports, two suspected gunmen have been arrested, while the police say there may be more involved.
The investigation is on.
Three Gunmen Fired on About 40 People
Five people were killed after gunmen opened fire in a Quebec City mosque during evening prayers, the mosque's president told reporters on Sunday.
Earlier, a witness said that two gunmen fired on about 40 people inside the Quebec City Islamic Cultural Centre, in the Sainte-Foy neighbourhood.
A number of ambulances are parked outside and the police have set up a perimeter around the mosque.
The shooting comes on the same day that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted saying the country welcomes those fleeing terror and war, regardless of their faith. His statement came in response to United States President Donald Trump’s ban on refugees and immigrants from some Muslim-majority countries.