Jewish leaders point to Trump after shooting at Pittsburgh

A group of Jewish leaders from Pittsburgh accuses Donald Trump in an open letter that he “took courage in the movement of white supremacists” or white racists.

According to the statement, he is partly responsible for the deadly attack on Saturday at the ‘Tree of Life’ synagogue in Pittsburgh, in the heart of the Squirrel Hill neighbourhood. Meanwhile, Muslims have already collected a lot of money for the victims of the shooting.

In total, eleven people were killed on Saturday, almost all over-60s. The police could pick up and identify the perpetrator. It concerns Robert Bowers (46), who declared that he wanted “all Jews to die”.

“Over the past three years, your words and your policy have given the white nationalist movement courage. It keeps growing. You yourself called the murder evil, but the violence of yesterday is the direct result of your influence,” the religious leaders say in their open letter.

Not welcome
They call on Trump to “condemn unreservedly white nationalism and stop all minorities from taking the sights and putting them at risk”.

They also ask “to always stop blaming migrants and refugees, and to commit to a democratic policy that recognizes the dignity of everyone”.

As long as he does not, Trump is not welcome in the city, it sounds in the letter. The American president already announced that he wants to visit Pittsburgh.

A crowdfunding campaign of two American Muslim groups has managed to raise more than $110,000 for the survivors and relatives of the eleven people who died in the shooting.

The campaign via website Launchgood reaches the target of $25,000 after 6 hours, and $50,000 after 24 hours. The current target is $125,000. Around 7am the counter stood at more than 110,000 dollars. The crowdfunding campaign is the work of CelebrateMercy and MPower Change, two non-profit organizations of American Muslims.

Message of unity
“We want to answer the bad with the good, as our faith demands, and in this way send out a powerful message of compassion”, the organizations say in a press release. The profits from the campaign will go to the wounded and to the families of the deadly victims, among other things to cover the costs of funerals and care.

“Through this campaign we hope to send a message of unity between the Jewish and Muslim communities. There is no room for this kind of hatred and violence in America,” say the organizations. “We pray that this brings a sense of security and peace back into the community of American Jews, who is undoubtedly shocked by this event.”

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