The Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council expresses its profound sadness and utter outrage at the murder of dozens people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida on Sunday.
The terrorist murders in the gay nightclub were reportedly committed by a single gunman, Omar Mateen. Mateen pledged loyalty to the Islamic State and is understood to have also acted out of anti-LGBT bigotry.
“The carnage which took place in the Orlando attack, against innocent people simply trying to enjoy a night out, is something which is difficult to even comprehend,” said AIJAC National Chairman Mark Leibler AC. “AIJAC mourns the loss of so many sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, partners and friends, offers the bereaved families and friends our sincerest sympathies, and prays for the full recovery of the injured.
“While investigations are still ongoing, one thing already appears clear, that this was both an act of terrorism and a hate crime against the LGBT community,” added AIJAC Executive Director Dr. Colin Rubenstein AM. “The first lesson we all must draw from this reality is that the bigoted attitudes and ideologies that fuel such terrorist violence and hate crimes must be totally and categorically rejected and vigorously combated by all people of good will.”
“This attack appears to have occurred in the overlap where radical Islamist ideology, a supremacist and totalitarian belief system, intersected on this occasion with the wider and malignant phenomenon of anti-LGBT bigotry. Unless we are prepared to identify clearly both these contributing realities, we will never be able to combat them effectively, raising the risk that horrors like this one will recur in future,” he concluded.
For additional information, contact AIJAC on (03)-9681-6660.