QuickQuotes: Canadian reactions to New Zealand mosque attacks

Canadians were quick to speak out against the attack on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand that left at least 49 people dead. Here is a selection of quotes:

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"Canada condemns this attack, and will continue to work closely with New Zealand, our close partner and friend, and others to take action against violent extremism. Hate has no place anywhere. We must all confront Islamophobia and work to create a world in which all people — no matter their faith, where they live, or where they were born — can feel safe and secure." — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

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"Freedom has come under attack in New Zealand as peaceful worshippers are targeted in a despicable act of evil. All people must be able to practice their faith freely and without fear. There are no words strong enough to condemn this kind of vile hatred. I am praying for peace for the families of those lost and recovery for those injured." — Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer

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"As Canadians are learning the horrific details of last night’s terror attack at two New Zealand mosques, I wish to express both my deep sadness at the tragic loss of innocent life and my profound condemnation of this cowardly and hateful attack on the Muslim community." — Scheer in a later statement, which specified that the victims were Muslim.

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"Heartbroken by the devastating news of deadly shootings at two mosques in New Zealand. My heart goes out to the families of the murdered and all those impacted by this act of terror. Islamophobia kills — and has no place anywhere in the world." — NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh

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"Like Quebec and Canada, New Zealand is a peaceful place where people want to live in safety and peace. We have recently experienced a tragedy that has affected everyone in Quebec. I feel totally in solidarity with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, and I fully understand her emotion today. There is no room for extremism in our societies; there is no room for intolerance. We will not allow violence to take root in our democratic societies." — Quebec Premier Francois Legault

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"I am devastated by the news of the despicable and cowardly shootings in New Zealand. Freedom of religion, peace and rule of law are pillars of democracy and the world we share." — Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister

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"There are those who want to fan the flames of intolerance, but that is not how Alberta was built. Today, as Alberta’s Muslim community gathers for Friday prayers, I want to thank the police officers and community members — people from all faiths and backgrounds — who have already stepped up to show love and support to help defend the sense of security that all of us expect and deserve." —Alberta Premier Rachel Notley

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"This is a very dark day for those of us who care about the rule of law, plurality, acceptance, and religious freedom. As Canadians, we are acutely aware that this is not the first time Muslims have been targeted while at prayer. That these innocent victims were murdered in their house of worship adds an additional dimension of horror to a deeply tragic situation." — Jeffrey Rosenthal, co-chair of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs

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"Once again, my heart breaks. Not because I am Muslim, but because I am human. But as we condemn the horrific terrorist act in New Zealand, we also must commit ourselves to fighting hatred wherever we find it. Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji'un. We belong to God to him we return." — Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi

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"I think we need the politics of division to stop feeding into the fringe with their rhetoric. We need upstanding political and community leaders to speak loudly, denouncing all forms of discrimination, including Islamophobia. And we need to work together as people who value our shared freedoms in this country. We need to stand together, and we need to speak loudly against anything that attempts to divide us." — Rabia Khedr, executive director of the Muslim Council of Peel

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