Condolences for the mass murder in Orlando, Florida

PRESS RELEASE

June 12, 2016

The American Sikh Council (ASC) is extremely distressed by the indescribable act of mass murder at the ‘Pulse’ – nightclub in the city of Orlando at around 2 am this morning. The club was packed with more than 300 people. A lone gunman armed with automatic weapons started to shoot and kill the people inside the dance club. In addition to the 50 people killed inside the club, at least 53 more people were taken to area hospitals and several in serious condition. Many of party goers continued to be held hostage in the club for several hours after the initial shooting, and special police teams were called to free the hostages. Sometime after 6 a.m. EST, Orlando police informed the public that the gunman Omar Mir Seddique Mateen had been killed, on June 12, 2016.

Currently, at least six trauma surgeons are working on the injured at the hospital in downtown Orlando. Some are still in critical condition. ASC especially encourages Sikh Americans, around the Orlando area in Florida, to donate blood.

The American Sikh Council (ASC) sends its heartfelt condolences to the families and loved ones of those who have been taken away by this unspeakable tragedy. We pray for a speedy and full recovery of the injured. Our prayers are with all the victims, their families, and local community. Dear friends; may Almighty God lighten your burden, and grace you with hope and healing under these very difficult circumstances. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this time of profound tragedy and grief.

Such heinous acts must be condemned in the strictest manner and the American Sikh Council (ASC) stands in solidarity with the civilized world. Religious radicalization must be taken very seriously and condemned publicly by all the appropriate national faith organization.

OrlandoShooting
Scene at Pulse, Orlando (Copyrights Splash News)

The fallout and repercussions of violence by radical Muslims especially in America has and continues to have very serious consequences against the Sikh American citizenry through conflation and misidentification, whether through ignorance or otherwise. While an extremely small minority within a very large faith group are maligning the entire faith, those few radicals by no means represent the majority. But it is imperative that the national Muslim organizations not only speak up but reach out to others as well.

As a result of such events, religious communities like the Sikh Americans are acutely vulnerable to backlash, and we urge everyone to exercise vigilance and caution during this period of heightened anxiety. Please notify the local law enforcement in case of any threats of violence.

The American Sikh Council is the umbrella organization representative of Sikhs in the United States. It is an elected body of Sikh Gurdwaras and institutions. Currently 71 Gurdwaras and other Sikh institutions across the nation are members of ASC. The major governing purpose of the organization is to represent the collective view of Sikhs in the United States. ASC works to promote Sikh interests at the national and international level focusing on issues of advocacy, education, and well-being of humankind.

Sincerely
Inderpreet Singh
Media and Public relations
American Sikh Council
P.O. Box 932, Voorhees, NJ 08043, USA
Phone: 607-269-7454
email: contact@americansikhcouncil.org
https://www.facebook.com/AmericanSikhCouncil/
www.AmericanSikhCouncil.org

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