The Canadian Islamic Congress issued a strong statement condemning today's criminal acts against American civilians and their government.

"We are deeply, profoundly shocked at what has happened today," said a shaken Prof. Mohamed Elmasry, national president of the CIC. "Whoever planned and executed these heinous acts is insane. We can only hope and pray for the many victims and their families. And we emphatically urge the American government to tap all available resources to find out, sooner rather than later, who is behind this horrific attack."

But Elmasry also appealed to all media professionals, law enforcement personnel, politicians, and security agencies -- in Canada, the U.S. and globally -- to restrain from prematurely speculation on who is responsible for a series of mid-morning attacks that felled the twin towers of New York's World Trade Centre, destroyed one section of the Pentagon, caused massive evacuations in major cities, and virtually shut down both the U.S. and Canada as each nation went to its highest levels of security alert.

Recalling the Oklahoma City federal building bombing -- which raised initial suspicions against foreign interests, but was later found to be the work of domestic terrorist Timothy McVeigh -- Elmasry urged the media to exercise core professional ethics and refrain from speculating on who might be responsible for this latest and unprecedented tragedy that some U.S. officials are already calling an "act of war." Unfounded suspicion "will only endanger the safety of the ordinary Muslim, both American and Canadian," he cautioned. "We were all victimized in some way by the Oklahoma City disaster and this should not repeated."

The CIC is instead coming forward on behalf of Canada's shocked Muslim community to join in what promises to be a massive international relief effort.

"For Muslims, even the taking of one innocent life is like killing all of humanity; it is against all we believe and are taught as children of God," Elmasry added. "Therefore, we are immediately coordinating our efforts with other Canadian humanitarian organizations, Muslim and non-Muslim, to give any aid we can to the victims of this tragedy." 

Mrs. Wahida Valiante, CIC national vice-president, voiced the same feelings on behalf of the organization. "My heart goes out to all families who have lost loved ones today; with countless others, my prayers will be for the recovery of the injured. It is almost impossible to imagine the pain and sorrow these people will go through as they try to come to terms with this horrible tragedy and put their lives back together -- just as the victims in Oklahoma City had to." 


Prof. Mohamed Elmasry
(519) 888-4567 Ext 3753 (O)
(519) 746-7928 (H)

Mrs. Wahida Valiante
(905) 881-8024

The Canadian Islamic Congress is a national Canadian organization committed to serve Muslim Canadians.  420 Erb St. West, Suite: 424, Waterloo, Ontario N2L 6K6, Tel: 519-746-1CIC (1242), Fax: 519-746-2929,  E-mail:

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