close
Advertisement

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!

add The News to homescreen

tap to bring up your browser menu and select 'Add to homescreen' to pin the The News web app

Got it!
 
June 13, 2021

Pak family mowed down in Canada laid to rest

 
June 13, 2021

Ag AFP

LONDON, Canada: The funeral of the four Pakisanis mowed down in a Islamophobic attack by a pickup truck driver early this week, was offered following afteroon prayers at the London Islamic center and later they were laid to rest at a private family ceremony.

Funeral services for Salman Afzaal, 46, his wife Madiha, 44, their daughter Yumna, 15 and Salman´s mother Talat, 74, were held at the London Islamic center. Earlier a public homage ceremony was held at a nearby football field. The attack left Canadians shocked and was denounced by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Afzaal, his wife, their teenage daughter and his mother -- were out for a walk in their London neighborhood Sunday when a 20-year-old man in a black pickup truck drove into them on purpose, according to authorities. A fifth family member, a nine-year-old boy, was seriously injured but is recovering. The burial was held in a private ceremony, but people had lined up along the route of the funeral cortege in solidarity with the victims of the attack, which has badly shaken the Muslim community and other Canadians as well. The participants wore green ribbons, to denounce Islamophobia, or mauve ones, the favorite color of young Yumna. Several hundred people including government leaders, mayor of London, Pakistan’s High Commissioner attended the homage ceremony and delivered addresses. The imam Aarji Anwer, from the Islamic center, told the CBC public network that he hoped the ceremony would help people grieve and bring some closure.

Numerous vigils and solemn commemorations have taken place across Canada in recent days, and on Friday several thousand people joined in an ecumenical walk through the streets of London, which is home to some 30,000

Muslims. Many bore posters reading “We are all human” or “Hate kills.”

Also on Friday, people also paid homage in Quebec City, where a January 2017 mosque shooting claimed six lives.The latest attack has fueled debate about the prevalence of Islamophobia in Canada and, within the Muslim community, has heightened fears that displaying outward signs of religious affiliation can make a person a target.

Twenty-year-old Nathaniel Veltman, who has no criminal record and no known link to any extremist group, has been charged with four counts of first-degree murder and one of attempted murder. Police, who say the attack was planned and motivated by hatred, have not ruled out adding terrorism-related charges. Trudeau has promised to step up the fight against extremist groups. Following the attack, Canadian deputies adopted a nonbinding resolution, introduced by the left-leaning New Democratic Party, calling for a national summit on Islamophobia this summer.