Copenhagen shootings: Thousands participate in peaceful rally

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Copenhagen: Thousand of Danes thronged the street of Copenhagen. The two shootings which shock the country. Shocked citizens of Denmark’s capital, also considered one of the world’s most peaceful countries, gathered in the peaceful rally in a square near the cultural center where the first attack had occurred. Countless vigilantes marched with flaming torches, illuminating the city’s chilly winter night. Per a police spokesman, some 30,000 people had showed up to pay last tributes to the two victims. The first victim was 55-year-old filmmaker Finn Norgaard, who was killed when a gunman opened fire during a debate being held on free speech on Saturday. The same attacker then proceeded to target the city’s main synagogue, killing 37-year-old Dan Uzan.

Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt adressed the crowd at the vigil, “Tonight I want to tell all Danish Jews: you are not alone. An attack on the Jews of Denmark is an attack on Denmark, on all of us.” This being a second attack on European Jews after first being targeted by extremists, just over a month before, during similar attacks in Paris, governments were compelled to reassure their Jewish communities. Thorning-Schmidt said the scale of the rally signified that Danes had come together to “insist on living free and safe lives in a democratic country. When others try to scare us and tear us apart, our response is always a strong community.” With US President Barack Obama extending solidarity to Denmark, a White House statement said, “the two leaders agree on the need to work together to confront attacks on freedom of expression as well as against anti-Semitic violence.”

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