California Muslims condemn 'horrific' mass shooting

Published December 3, 2015
Farhan Khan (C), brother-in-law of San Bernardino, shooting suspect Syed Farook, speaks at the Council on American-Islamic Relations during a news conference in Anaheim, California December 2, 2015. —Reuters
Farhan Khan (C), brother-in-law of San Bernardino, shooting suspect Syed Farook, speaks at the Council on American-Islamic Relations during a news conference in Anaheim, California December 2, 2015. —Reuters

LOS ANGELES: California's Muslim community expressed its horror on Wednesday at the mass shooting that killed at least 14 in San Bernardino, after a local man named Syed Farook was widely identified as a suspect.

Farook, a US citizen who worked for the town's health department, is believed to have been killed in a shootout with police hours after opening fire inside a Christmas party at a local social services centre.

Hussam Ayloush, executive director of the Los Angeles chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), said its members “unequivocally condemn the horrific act that happened today."

“The Muslim community stands shoulder to shoulder with our fellow Americans in repudiating any twisted mindset that would claim to justify such sickening acts of violence,” he added in a statement.

Examine: US Muslims face backlash after Paris attacks

Authorities have drawn no connection between the attack and radical Islam at this stage in the investigation.

Farook's brother-in-law, Farhan Khan, came forward at the press conference to voice his shock at the notion his brother-in-law could have committed mass murder.

“I have no idea why he would do that,” a visibly shaken Khan told reporters, adding that he had last spoken with Farook about a week ago.

“I am in shock that something like this could happen,” said Khan, who is married to Farook's sister. “I am very sad that people lost their lives."

Muzammil Siddiqi, the religious director of the Islamic Society of Orange County, also condemned the killings saying they were contrary to the teachings of Islam.

“We have condemned all violence everywhere because human life is precious," he said. “And we respect and honor human life."

According to local news reports Farook was employed by the San Bernardino County health department which is believed to have organised the party at the Inland Regional Center.

The attack on the party triggered a massive manhunt that ended when police shot dead two heavily armed suspects — a man, believed to be Farook, and a woman — on a quiet residential street.

Opinion

Editorial

Iran’s counterstrike
Updated 15 Apr, 2024

Iran’s counterstrike

Israel, by attacking Iran’s diplomatic facilities and violating Syrian airspace, is largely responsible for this dangerous situation.
Opposition alliance
15 Apr, 2024

Opposition alliance

AFTER the customary Ramazan interlude, political activity has resumed as usual. A ‘grand’ opposition alliance ...
On the margins
15 Apr, 2024

On the margins

IT appears that we are bent upon taking the majoritarian path. Thus, the promise of respect and equality for the...
Noshki killings
Updated 14 Apr, 2024

Noshki killings

It must be asked why Baloch separatists continue to target civilians as well as security men despite large deployment.
Upholding the law
14 Apr, 2024

Upholding the law

THE recent discord in Bahawalnagar offers a chance to reflect on the sanctity of the law and its enforcement across...
Tragic travels
14 Apr, 2024

Tragic travels

FOR those embarking on road and boat journeys, the probability of fatal accidents has seen a steady rise. The recent...