QUEBEC CITY, Que. — A French far-right party whose leader’s anti-Muslim views were apparently shared by the man accused of killing six people at a Quebec City mosque is calling the mass shooting “deplorable.”
Alexandre Bissonnette, a 27-year-old university student charged with murder and attempted murder in the Sunday night massacre, was a fan of Marine Le Pen, the leader of the National Front in France, according to his Facebook account.
Le Pen is known for her anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant positions and has won the endorsement and admiration of white supremacists.
When asked about Bissonnette’s support for Le Pen, a spokesman for her party said Monday the French politician should not have to apologize for comments people make on their private Facebook pages.
Police have offered no information on what they believe motivated the shooting at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Quebec.
Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard says the shooting does not mean the province has failed in its attempt to be an open society.
He says every society has to live with its demons, but he’s urging Quebecers to work together and continue to express solidarity with the Muslim community.