Synagogue gunman said he wanted all Jews to die

The Tree of Life Congregation Synagogue in Pittsburgh

The Tree of Life Congregation Synagogue in Pittsburgh

The attack on the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, which, in taking the lives of 11 worshipers, represents the worst attack on the Jewish people on U.S. soil.

The mass shooting, called the deadliest attack on Jews in USA history, hit particularly close to home for Aaron, who said she used to live just a block away from Tree of Life, which is nestled in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood near several universities. The gunman killed 11 worshipers and wounded six others, including four police officers. "We don't know what motivated the shooter, but when something like this strikes, the randomness of it terrifies".

Emmanuel Garcia, an organizer with the Latino LGBTQ community, said he attended the vigil because he remembered how many people supported his community in the wake of the Pulse shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., and he wanted to do the same for another group.

More than a quarter of Pittsburgh's 50,000 Jewish adults and children live in Squirrel Hill, according to the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, one of the largest Jewish populations in Pennsylvania.

Daniel Stein, 71, of Squirrel Hill, Pa.

Bob Jones, head of the FBI's Pittsburgh office, said that worshippers "were brutally murdered by a gunman targeting them simply due to their faith", though he cautioned the shooter's full motive was not yet known.

In another, he slammed US President Donald Trump for doing nothing to stop an "infestation" of the United States by Jews.

Trump said the "evil Anti-Semitic attack is an assault on humanity". "How many mosques, synagogues, churches and schools and malls and movie theaters will we have to retrieve dead bodies from before we realize we that we have a real problem with violence?"

"Honestly I think this President's whole modus operandi is to divide us". "We will not try to rationalise irrational behaviour, we will not find ways to lessen it", he said.

Mr Trump told reporters later that the killings might have been prevented if there had been an armed guard in the building.

Shafir said his organization regularly meets with the Edmonton Police Service and officials are aware of extra security the community requires.

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Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto disagreed.

Some of the country's premiers also weighed in, with Ontario's Doug Ford saying that we must work together to "defeat anti-Semitism and bigotry in all its forms".

But for many in Squirrel Hill, and probably across the country, this is more than just tragedy coming to a small, close community.

A survivor of the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre described Sunday how he and other terrorized worshippers concealed themselves in a supply closet as the gunman stepped over the body of a man he had just shot and killed, entered their darkened hiding spot and looked around.

Police had responded to emergency calls about 9:45 a.m. Saturday morning as regular religious services were being held by three congregations at the the Tree of Life Synagogue.

Bowers surrendered after a shootout with a SWAT team.

Bowers was taken to Allegheny General Hospital in fair condition with multiple gunshot wounds.

News of the attack spread quickly through the surrounding neighborhood.

He said he could imagine a scene of pandemonium if the assailant showed up at his temple. He also was among a corps of the New Light members who, with Wax and Richard Gottfried, 65, made up "the religious heart" of the congregation, Cohen, the congregation co-president, said.

He faces 29 federal charges, 22 of which are punishable by death, US Attorney Scott Brady said. Bowers' virulent anti-Semitic views were evident in prolific online postings.

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