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Jewish school in Toronto hit by gunfire

By AFP

May 26, 2024 08:36 AM


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A Jewish girls' school in Toronto was hit by gunfire early Saturday, without causing any injuries but prompting Canadian authorities to step up security at other schools and synagogues, police said.

The suspects, who arrived at Bais Chaya Mushka in a dark colored vehicle, opened fire just before 5:00 am and caused "some damage to the front of the school" before leaving the scene, police inspector Paul Krawczyk said at a news conference.

Police increased their presence in the school's north Toronto neighborhood, as well as at other schools and synagogues, Krawczyk said.

"I completely understand that this can cause concern and fear and anxiety in the community," he said, without speculating on the motive.

"We're not going to ignore the obvious, you know, what occurred here and what the target of the shooting was," he said. "But at the same time, it will be wrong to just guess at this point."

Ontario Premier Doug Ford, however, called the incident "a gross display of anti-Semitism."

"It's beyond belief that anyone could be this hateful," he said in a post on X.

"Reports of shots fired at a Jewish elementary school in North York are despicable -- a brazen act of antisemitism," said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The shooting comes amid the war in Gaza sparked by Palestinian militant group Hamas's unprecedented October 7 attack on Israel.

Hamas's assault resulted in the deaths of more than 1,170 people, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally based on Israeli official figures.

Militants also took 252 hostages, 121 of whom remain in Gaza, including 37 the Israeli army says are dead.

Israel's retaliatory offensive has killed at least 35,903 people in Gaza, mostly civilians, according to the Hamas-run territory's health ministry.

In November, a Jewish school in Montreal was hit by gunfire twice in one week. There were no injuries.


AFP


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