A Prayer That Ends In Death


 

The shooting that took place inside a mosque in Quebec, Canada on January 29th, was an act of islamophobia by Alexandre Bissonnette who killed 6 people and injured 8.

At 20:00 on Sunday, more than 50 people were at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City, after they ended praying. When it was bound to be a normal day, a man entered and started shooting, taking the life of six people and injuring eight. The victims were all men between 39 and 60 years old. The man accused of being the gunman, Alexandre Bissonnette, was charged with six counts of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder using a restricted firearm on Monday, according to police sources.

alex-bissonnette

Alexandre Bissonnette, 27 years old. – wpmedia.montrealgazette.com –

Alexandre Bissonnette is a 27 years old Quebec native who studied political science and anthropology at Laval University, close from where the shooting took place. Khaled Belkacemi, former professor at Laval University, also died in the attack. Mr Bissonnette went to the mosque days before the shooting with a curious and suspicious attitude. A witness in the mosque said that the Young man wasn’t interested in learning about their religion. Nobody imagined what days later would happen. Those who knew him from near or far and the families of the victims are wondering why.

Mr Bissonnette was known for taking nationalist and anti-feminist positions by their classmates. According to the testimonies that were provided by the authorities and published by Montreal Gazette, he was bullied at school for being a “nerd” and he built a thick skin, according to statements of his twin brother. A friend of Alexander reassured that this individual was independent, not antisocial. Another more recent acquaintance suggested that Bissonnette had become radicalized in the last year, mainly through the Internet. We can see in his FaceBook page how refugee’s advocates and community organizers were regularly moscked by Alexander Bissonnette with anti-immigrant and anti-feminist statements.

Facts such a pig’s head being left at the mosque’s doorstep last year- as we have found in these article of CBC NEWS.- make us wonder if the police have taken properly measures. We need stronger condemnation of hate speech in a context where there is Trump, that is normalizing anti-Muslim discourse, and it seeps into people.

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Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City

According to what The New York Times tell us in one of its articles contrasted with official sources, the shooting was the first time anyone had been killed in a mosque in Canada in such circumstances and was, at least in recent times, a rare event outside the Muslim world. Also is particularly decisive and relevant to know the current frame of creeping intolerance, fuelled by other politicians as much as Trump. Who is constantly posting on his personal twitter messages that encourage hatred and revenge.

We can’t forget that on Friday 27 of January (two days before the Quebec shooting) Trump signed the order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority countries for 90 days and suspending all refugee admission for 120 days,  CNN. He didn’t mention anything but these tweets about what happened in Quebec:

On the other hand the Prime Minister of Canada Mr. Trudeau, said at a memorial near the mosque on Monday:

“Muslim Canadians are valued members of every community and wherever they live they deserve to feel safe; they are home here” 


This research was done by Alejandro Martín, Marina Barberá and Alba Tissera.

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