Man charged over Canadian mosque attack

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has condemned "this terrorist attack on Muslims"

Man charged over Canadian mosque attack

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Updated 6.35am

Officials in Quebec have released the names of six people killed in an attack at a mosque after a man was charged with their murders.

The Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre was attacked by a gunman at about 8pm on Sunday, as a group of about 50 people gathered for evening prayers.

Among those killed was Azzedine Soufiane, a 57-year-old grocer and butcher with three children.

Mr Soufiane was described by local imam Karim Elabed as a longtime Quebec City resident who helped guide newcomers to the provincial capital.

Khaled Belkacemi, 60, was a professor in food science at Laval University.

University rector Denis Briere said he had been "an esteemed member of the faculty and the university, a devoted and beloved man of his colleagues and students".

Mr Belkacemi was married to a fellow professor and they had three children.

Abdelkrim Hassen, 41, was an IT worker for the government and was married with three daughters.

Two of the other victims, Mamadou Tanou Barry, 42, and Ibrahim Barry, 39, were brothers from Guinea.

Aboubaker Thabti, 44, was also killed in the attack.

There were also 19 people injured in the shooting and five of those remain in a critical condition.

The mosque vice president Mohamed Labidi said the victims were shot in the back and that, although security was a "major, major concern" at the mosque, they had been "caught off guard" by the Sunday attack.

"It's a very, very big tragedy for us," he said. "We have sadness we cannot express."

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has called the shooting a "terrorist attack on Muslims", adding that it is "heart-wrenching to see such senseless violence".

He vowed that Canadian law enforcement "will make every effort to apprehend the perpetrators of this act and all acts of intolerance".

Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan has condemned the attack:

Alexandre Bissonnette has been charged with six counts of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder.
He made a brief appearance in court and did not enter a plea.

Wearing a white prisoner jumpsuit, his hands and feet shackled, he looked at the floor and fidgeted but remained silent.

The 27-year-old reportedly had nationalist and right-wing sympathies.

His Facebook page listed French far-right party leader Marine Le Pen and US president Donald Trump among his "likes".

He had also expressed support on his Facebook page for Generation Nationale, a group whose causes include the rejection of multiculturalism.

According to his profile, which has since been taken down, he attended the Universite Laval, where he studied political science and anthropology.

An unidentified student told La Presse that Bissonnette was "a loner" with no friends.

A second man arrested after the attack is being treated as a witness, not a suspect, police have said.