Vigils held in Windsor and Chatham-Kent for Muslim family killed in vehicle attack
WINDSOR, ONT. -- Vigils took place in Windsor and Chatham-Kent for the victims in a vehicle attack where police say a Muslim family was intentionally struck, killing four members and injuring a young boy.
The Windsor Mosque parking lot at 1320 Northwood Street was full Wednesday evening, mourning the loss of the Afzaal family.
“I’m here today because this is heartbreaking. I’m tired of seeing our sisters and brothers in Islam go through this,” says Luula Ali.
Attendees also prayed for a nine-year-old who survived the attack, but is in hospital with serious injuries.
“It’s really terrifying. I think it really shows how insidious closeted islamophobia is,” says Amna Masoodi.
The Windsor Islamic Council is calling on authorities, politicians and society to stand firmly against all forms of hate and discrimination.
“We appreciate the support from our political leaders. I think a little bit more can done but that’s up to our political leaders and us speaking to our political leaders and working with them,” says Osama Warsi, media director for the Windsor Islamic Association.
Windsor city councilors Kieran Mackenzie, Jim Morrison and Fabio Cosante were all in attendance along with mayor Drew Dilkens.
“We gather tonight to let Londoner's know and quite frankly the world knows that incidents like this cannot and will not go unnoticed. Your presence tonight certainly reinforces the love and respect I have for this community,” says Dilkens.
In Chatham-Kent, flags at all municipal locations in will be lowered to commemorate the lives of four members of London’s Muslim community killed on Sunday.
“We stand in solidarity with the Muslim community,” said Mayor Darrin Canniff. “Hatred and violence have no place in our country. No one should be alienated and live in fear because of the colour of their skin, their manner of dress or their religion.”
The municipality also held a drive-by event at the Chatham Civic Centre where motorists were asked to pass by in a westbound direction on King Street to facilitate those who want to drop off flowers, items of remembrance or donations to the London family.
Four members of the Afzaal family including a grandmother, mother, father and teenage girl, died as a result of the attack.
London police say the 20-year-old male driver of the pickup mounted the curb and struck the family intentionally.
The suspect was arrested steps from the London Muslim Mosque.
The Windsor Islamic Council is calling on authorities, politicians, and society to stand firmly against all forms of hate and discrimination.
With files from CTVNewsLondon.ca.