America mourns 11 victims of gunman who 'wanted Jews to die'

Canadian politicians offer sympathies following Pittsburgh synagogue shooting

Vancouver's Jewish community wants the victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting to be remembered and celebrated for who they were, not just as a "piece of news".

A gunman opened fire during a baby naming ceremony at the Tree of Life Congregation in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighbourhood.

"We are devastated", said the group's head, Jonathan Greenblatt.

Bowers surrendered, and was taken to a hospital where he was listed in fair condition with multiple gunshot wounds.

The nation's latest mass shooting drew condemnation and expressions of sympathy from politicians and religious leaders of all stripes.

From left, Rabbi Benjamin Sendrow, accompanied by President Donald Trump and Pastor Thom O'Leary, prays at the 91st annual Future Farmers of America Convention and Expo at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018, following a shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue.

Trump, who quickly branded Saturday's shooting an act of pure evil and called on Americans to rise above hatred, was already facing similar criticism ahead of the Nov 6 congressional elections following a spate of pipe bombs mailed last week to some of his prominent critics.

"It's just a reminder that we have so much work to do as a country to overcome the hate that exist today", said Nauman Wadalwala, Islamic Foundation of Greater St. Louis.

"I've heard the president's comments about how we should arm guards in our synagogues, our churches, our mosques. He gets up in the morning with new and inventive ways to divide us", US Representative Adam Schiff, a California Democrat who is Jewish, said on CNN's "State of the Union" broadcast on Sunday.

Shafir said his organization regularly meets with the Edmonton Police Service and officials are aware of extra security the community requires. "We should be working to eliminate irrational behaviour and the empowerment of people who would seek to cause this type of carnage from continuing".

The attack - the darkest day of Pittsburgh's history, according to Mayor Bill Peduto - happened as worshippers gathered in a drizzly morning in different rooms at the congregation, home to three different synagogues. The oldest was a 97-year-old woman, Rose Mallinger, and the youngest a 54-year-old man, David Rosenthal, who died with his brother Cecil, 59.

Zachary Weiss, 26, said his father, 60-year-old Stephen Weiss, was inside the synagogue but was unharmed.

The rabbi, who had helped pull people out of the synagogue after the attack, chanted a memorial prayer in Hebrew, wiping his eyes with a handkerchief.

Worshippers "were brutally murdered by a gunman targeting them simply due to their faith", said Bob Jones, head of the FBI's Pittsburgh office, though he cautioned the shooter's full motive was not yet known.

The two exchanged gunfire, he said, and Bowers reentered the building before a police tactical squad arrived.

Four police officers or SWAT team members were injured, one critically.

News of the attack spread quickly through the surrounding neighborhood.

He said he could imagine a scene of pandemonium if the assailant showed up at his temple. Federal prosecutors charged him late on Saturday with 29 criminal counts including violence and firearms offenses, and violating USA civil rights laws.

Though Bowers hid his anti-Semitic rage from his neighbors, it was on full display online.



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