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Local Islamic Centers Condemn Orlando Nightclub Shooting, Hold Vigil For Victims

BOSTON (CBS) -- Islamic centers across the state are publicly condemning the acts of a gunman in Orlando who opened fire on a nightclub Sunday morning killing 50 people.

CBS News reported that the suspected shooter, Omar Mateen, mentioned the Tsarnaev brothers when he called 911 and declared his allegiance to ISIS. Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev set off two bombs at the 2013 Boston Marathon, killing 3, and later killed MIT Police Officer Sean Collier. Massachusetts State Police has said the suspected gunman has no connection to Massachusetts.

The attack comes at a time when Muslims around the world are observing Ramadan, a month of fasting, prayer and reflection.

"This senseless act of violence is an affront to all human dignity, and has no place in any society, community or faith," Yusufi Vali, spokesman for The Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center in Roxbury, said in a public statement. "It certainly goes against anything our faith stands for."

The Council of Islamic Relations Massachusetts will hold a vigil Sunday night at 5 pm at the Monument in Jamaica Plain and at 6 pm at the Boston Common to offer prayers for the victims and their families. The Islamic Centers in Greater Worcester also plan to hold an interfaith prayer service Sunday night.

"The Quran tells us to repel evil with that which is better, and we're urging local Muslims to do exactly that, through supporting those who have lost so much," Dr. John Robbins, Executive Director of CAIR-MA said in a public statement.


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