All Six Killed In Quebec Mosque Attack Are Africans

Canadian police have charged a 27-year-old man over the deadly shooting at a Quebec City mosque on Sunday. The six worshippers who died were African immigrants who had moved to Quebec to seek a better life.

Khaled Belkacemi, 60

Mr Belkacemi studied chemical engineering in his native Algeria before moving to Canada in the 1980s. He taught food science at Quebec’s Laval University and was married to a fellow professor there. His wife was also at the mosque when the shooting occurred during Sunday prayers, but she escaped unhurt.

The head of Laval’s food science department, Jean-Claude Dufour, described Mr Belkacemi as “an extraordinary person” who was “always smiling” and “an outstanding teacher who loved his graduate students”.

Azzedine Soufiane, 57

Mr Soufiane was born in Morocco and settled in Quebec three decades ago. He ran a halal shop in the suburb of Sainte-Foy and is described as a important member of the local Muslim community.

Karim Elabed, an imam in nearby Levis, said Mr Soufiane had helped many newcomers in Quebec City. “When I arrived here eight years ago, [his shop] was the first place I learned about and pretty much all of Quebec’s Muslims did their groceries there,” Mr Elabed told Canadian media.

Abdelkrim Hassane, 41

Abdelkrim Hassane studied information technology in Algeria before emigrating. A colleague quoted by the Globe and Mail newspaper said Mr Hassane had lived in Paris and Montreal before settling in Quebec City.

Mr Hassane worked as a programmer for the Quebec government. The colleague, Abderrezak Redouane, said he was “a very peaceful, sensitive man”. He had three children.

Mamadou Tanou Barry, 42, and Ibrahima Barry, 39

The two men, described as brothers by Radio Canada, were born in Guinea in West Africa. They are described as IT workers. Mamadou Tanou was a father of two and was reportedly sending money home to Guinea.

“Tanou lost his father three years ago, so it became his responsibility to support not only his family here but also his family in Africa. Now that’s all been cut,” a family friend told the Globe and Mail.

Ibrahima worked for the province’s health-insurance agency and had four children.

Aboubaker Thabti, 44

Born in Tunisia, Mr Thabti is reported to have moved to Quebec a decade ago and worked in a pharmacy. He was married with two young children, his brother said on Facebook.

A friend, Abder Dhakkar, told the Globe and Mail: “He’s so kind; everyone loves him – everyone.”

 

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