The World Wraps Its Arms Around America After Horrific Orlando Attack
Global solidarity demonstrations to honor Orlando victims
The Orlando mass shooting inside Pulse nightclub has shocked the world and many around the world are expressing their solidarity with the victims and their loved ones in all possible ways. The tragedy has touched not only LGBT communities across the globe, but also every single individual who condemns the hatred and intolerance felt by the victims of such a horrific event. From the moment the news broke, politicians and religious leaders were quick to react with their deepest condolences.
President Barack Obama expressed the deep grief felt by all Americans to “the brutal murder, the horrific massacre of dozens of innocent people.” Both presumptive presidential nominees reacted to the mass shooting on their Twitter accounts. While speaking to NBC’s “Meet the Press”, the Democratic presidential candidate and Vermont senator, Bernie Sanders, also condemned the horrific acts while he spoke about the importance of banning the sell of automatic weapons. Muslim leaders across the U.S. also condemned the shooting. As told by Business Insider, Nihad Awad, executive director and founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said at a press conference in Washington DC referring to ISIS:
“You do not speak for us. You do not represent us. You are an aberration. They never belonged to this beautiful faith. They claim to, but 1.7 billion people are united in rejecting their extremism, their interpretation and their acts of senseless violence.”
But outside the U.S., demonstrations of solidarity have also been strong. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, speaking at the start of a three-day UN session in Geneva, condemned the attacks just as any other perpetrated on people as a result of their presumed beliefs, opinions, or sexual orientation. Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon, also denounced the attack on Twitter:
Orlando: Ban Ki-moon condemns attack; extends deepest condolences to victims' families & expresses solidarity w/ Govt & ppl of the US.
— United Nations (@UN) June 12, 2016
London’s new Mayor Sadiq Khan also tweeted a message against bigotry and hatred, standing with the people of Orlando:
I stand with the City of Orlando against hate and bigotry. My thoughts are with all the victims of this horrific attack #lovewins
— Mayor of London (@MayorofLondon) June 12, 2016
Another important figure who spoke against the tragic events was Pope Francis, in a statement from the Holy See. According to Business Standard, the statement said the attack:
“has caused in Pope Francis, and in all of us, the deepest feelings of horror and condemnation… Before this new manifestation of homicidal folly and senseless hatred. We all hope that ways may be found, as soon as possible, to effectively identify and contrast the causes of such terrible and absurd violence.”
Countries like Saudi Arabia also joined the pain and grief felt by all America. According to Al Arabiya — Prince Abdullah said his kingdom stood with the American people and prayed for the recovery of all those injured, while the Saudi Ambassador to the U.S., Abdullah Al-Saud condemned the attacks and sent its condolences to the victim’s families and friends. Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe sent a message to President Obama expressing his shock and outrage over what happened and reiterating the bond between the U.S. and Japan in continuing the fight against terrorism and its threat to the international community as a whole. Others who expressed their condolences were Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; Australia’s Primer Minister Malcolm Turnbull, and Singapore — through its Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Embassy. At the same time, tributes to the victims have been paid across the globe, and world landmarks have been it in the rainbow colors to honor the victims, such as the Eiffel Tower in France, Israel’s Tel Aviv City Hall, and New Zealand’s Auckland Sky Tower.
— Anne Hidalgo (@Anne_Hidalgo) June 13, 2016
— ian bremmer (@ianbremmer) June 12, 2016
— JoJo ❤ (@jojoblack77) June 13, 2016
The Orlando shooting was not only a blow to the U.S. or the LGBT community, but a blow to anyone around the world who believes and fights for freedom, tolerance, respect and love. It is not about religion, race or sexual orientation, it is about humanity.
Featured image via Daniel Munoz/Getty Images News.