Sui­cide at­tack kills 3 at Chris­tian mas­sacre memo­rial in Syria

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

BEIRUT—Three peo­ple were killed in north­east Syria on Mon­day when a sui­cide bomber at­tacked an event com­mem­o­rat­ing the mas­sacre of Chris­tians more than a cen­tury ago, state me­dia and a se­cu­rity source said.

The at­tack in the city of Qamishli took place as lo­cals gath­ered at a hall to com­mem­o­rate the deaths of tens of thou­sands of Chris­tians by the Ot­toman army start­ing in 1915 in what is known as the Sayfo (“Sword”) mas­sacre.

A pho­tog­ra­pher work­ing with AFP and at­tend­ing the event said he heard the blast and saw pieces of flesh ly­ing next to dam­aged cars.

“The sui­cide at­tacker tried to en­ter the hall where peo­ple were gath­ered but was stopped by lo­cal se­cu­rity forces, and he det­o­nated him­self among them,” a se­cu­rity source at the scene told AFP. The se­cu­rity forces be­longed to the So­toro, a Chris­tian mili­tia based in Syria’s north­east.

“Three So­toro mem­bers were killed and five wounded,” the secu- rity source said.

One So­toro mem­ber told AFP that the sui­cide bomber “det­o­nated him­self near our check­point af­ter he couldn’t reach his real tar­get, Pa­tri­arch Ig­natius.”

Pa­tri­arch Ig­natius Aphrem II is the head of the Syr­iac Orthodox church and was lead­ing the com­mem­o­ra­tion. Syria’s state news agency SANA also re­ported

SA­MAR FATANY NCE again the killing of in­no­cent peo­ple dominates head­lines around the world. The Florida night­club shoot­ing by a bipo­lar in­di­vid­ual who killed 49 peo­ple and wounded many oth­ers has shocked the en­tire world.

Los An­ge­les Mayor Eric Garcetti is­sued a state­ment, which said: “Once again, a shocking act of vi­o­lence forces us to re­flect on the price of al­low­ing easy ac­cess to fear­some weaponry. We must dis­tin­guish be­tween the free­dom to bear arms and the ir­re­spon­si­ble poli­cies that open the way, again and again, for our en­e­mies to turn their ha­tred into ex­plo­sions of deadly mass vi­o­lence.”

I could not agree more with Mayor Garcetti’s state­ment crit­i­ciz­ing the free­dom to bear arms and the poli­cies that al­low ac­cess to ex­plo­sions of deadly mass vi­o­lence. How­ever, I hope his ref­er­ence to “our en­e­mies” is to the en­e­mies of hu­man­ity and not Mus­lims who are tar­geted by Trump and other US of­fi­cials and la­beled as en­e­mies of the state.

It is very sad to hear the con­tin­ued bash­ing of Mus­lims and the un­fair ac­cu­sa­tions that iden­tify them as the only source of global ter­ror. Mus­lims can­not al­ways be blamed for all the mur­ders com­mit­ted by crim­i­nals who call them­selves Mus­lims.

Be­fore point­ing fin­gers, let us an­a­lyze the root causes of the spread of ter­ror­ism that is more threat­en­ing to Arabs and Mus­lims who

Othree peo­ple killed in a “ter­ror­ist sui­cide ex­plo­sion” in

Qamishli but did not spec­ify whether they were civil­ians or se­cu­rity forces.

Sit­u­ated along the bor­der with Turkey, Qamishli has been reg­u­larly tar­geted by sui­cide bomb­ings, many of which have been claimed by the ISIS ji­hadist group.—Agen­cies

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