National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia 🟩 Green Square Campaign

January 29th, 2022 Permalink

Photographies de partout au Canada partagées en cette Journée nationale de commémoration de l’attaque de la mosquée de Québec et d’action contre l’islamophobie. En souvenir de six musulmans qui nous ont été enlevés à Québec, un à Etobicoke et quatre à London, en Ontario. Images également de la campagne du carré vert.

S’il n’y a pas d’enregistrement, il n’y a pas d’histoire, cela ne s’est pas produit. Cet essai photographique est mon récit de ce qui s’est passé le samedi 29 janvier 2022. — HïMY SYeD

Photographs from around Canada being shared on this National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia. Remembering six Muslims who were taken from us in Québec City, one in Etobicoke, and four in London, Ontario. Images also of the Green Square Campaign.

If there is no record, there is no history, it didn’t happen. This Photographic Essay is my record of what happened on Saturday January 29 2022. — HïMY SYeD

“Je me souviens du 29 janvier, une soirée qu’on croyait banale et qui a finalement tourné à la tragédie.

“Le combat contre l’islamophobie, l’intolérance et la haine repose sur nous tous.

“Il faut s’y opposer, dénoncer, sensibiliser et éduquer.

“Et si jamais l’envie de baisser les bras nous prend, je nous invite à penser à Khaled Belkacemi, Azzeddine Soufiane, Aboubaker Thabti, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Abdelkrim Hassane et Ibrahima Barry qui resteront à jamais gravés dans notre mémoire collective.” — Aref Salim, Chef de l’Opposition officielle à l’Hôtel de ville de Montréal et conseiller de la Ville dans Saint Laurent

( Animation credit : Aref Salim )


Open Letter from Canadian Muslim Leaders and Community Representatives, NCCM, National Council of Canadian Muslims, Press Conference, Parliament Hill, Ottawa, Ontario Canada, Wednesday February 8 2017

On February 8 2017, the National Council of Canadian Muslims and other community leaders call on Canadian governments to take concrete measures against Islamophobia, racism, and discrimination, following the deadly attack at a Quebec City mosque.

Speakers include Mohamed Yangui, president of the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec, where the shootings occurred.

( Video credit : HïMY SYeD / )


“It’s official :

“January 29 will forever be the National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia

“May those we lost rest in eternal peace.

“May their families take some solace in this.” — Amira Elghawaby, Wednesday April 28 2021

( Screencapture credit : Amira Elghawaby )


Atrium of Pavillon Desjardins at Université Laval à Québec, Tuesday evening, January 29 2019.

( Video credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Grande Mosquée De Québec – CCIQ
Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec

Two years after a gunman killed six worshippers in the Quebec City mosque, a public commemoration was held on Tuesday evening, January 29 2019.

That event was held inside the atrium of Pavillon Desjardins at Université Laval à Québec.

During the evening’s program, Banners with the names and faces of the six victims were unfurled as a single word chosen by family members to describe their loved one was read aloud :

Mamadou Tanou Barry — smiling.

Ibrahima Barry — intelligent.

Khaled Belkacemi — devoted.

Abdelkrim Hassane — pious.

Azzeddine Soufiane — courageous.

Aboubaker Thabti — generous.

It was one of many emotional moments as hundreds of people had gathered at Université Laval for that second annual ceremony paying homage to the victims.

Those banners have returned each year since first being dislayed as part of the second official Commemoration.

For the days leading up to the Fifth Anniversary on Saturday January 29 2022, those same banners were put on public display, hanging on the outside wall of Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec in Sainte Foy.

( Photo credit : Radio-Canada )


Le 29 janvier 2017, le terroriste était entré au Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec et y avait assassiné six hommes, en plus d’en blesser huit autres.

La Ville de Québec a inauguré mardi matin, 29 janvier 2021, le monument en l’honneur des victimes de l’attaque.

L’oeuvre a été conçue par l’artiste Luce Pelletier et est située de chaque côté de la route de l’Église, à la jonction du chemin Sainte-Foy : une partie au Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec et l’autre au site patrimonial de la Visitation.

Le mémorial comprend entre autres trois socles de pierre sur lesquels sont inscrits les noms de Khaled Belkacemi, Azzeddine Soufiane, Abdelkrim Hassane, Aboubaker Thabti, Mamadou Tanou Barry et Ibrahima Barry.

Au-dessus de celles-ci on trouve six feuilles en aluminium dont le design est inspiré des traditions ornementales des pays d’origine des victimes : le Maroc, la Guinée, la Tunisie et l’Algérie.

( Image credit : HïMY SYeD )


Visitors or worshippers approaching the Islamic Cultural Centre in Quebec City’s Sainte-Foy neighbourhood are no longer greeted by large picture windows that previously faced the street.

Now replaced with a concrete wall with smaller windows, in case someone tries to ram the building with a truck.

The building is also being remodelled to reflect the gutted Catholic church, destroyed in a fire in 1977, standing across the street, with a minaret that will mirror the bell tower the church once had: a symbol, of sorts, that the two communities are linked and thriving together.

Once it is fully remodelled, it will include architectural elements more in tune with its religious vocation.

Ornate designs over the doorways will add a “classic and modern” look to the mosque.

A minaret will soon tower over the front entrance, mirroring the ruins of the steeple of the former parish church, Notre-Dame-de-Foy, the burnt-out shell of which stands across the street.

“We were inspired by the church next door.

“It will build a kind of link, in a way.” — Kamel Kheroua, architectural adviser on the project

The expansion made room for approximately 300 additional worshippers, on the building’s three levels.

“On Fridays, all our floors are full.

“It’s hard to find an empty space, so it’s necessary.” — Mohamed Labidi

( Photo credit : Sylvain Roy Roussell / Radio-Canada )


Les rénovations du Centre culturel qui viennent tout juste de s’achever font partie du processus qui permettra un jour, peut-être, de cicatriser la plaie.

Les rénovations du bâtiment ont été pensées en fonction de la sécurité des lieux et plusieurs systèmes de sécurité sophistiqués ont été installés.

( Photo credit : CBC Montreal )


Putting a better security system in place was a long-standing priority.

“The hateful acts started with graffiti on the walls, continued with leaflets passed around to houses in the neighbourhood, and culminated with the pig’s head [left on the doorstep of the mosque in Ramadan of 2016].

“All that put us on guard that something was being prepared.

“It was like a race against the clock.” — Mohamed Labidi

Though upgrades had been planned even before 2017, the attack made it clear to the mosque directors that the building needed to be safer.

Today, security cameras face all the entrances, including the one a gunman used on Sunday January 29 2017, when he walked in and opened fire in the prayer room, killing six worshippers and wounding 19.

At least two volunteers now monitor security cameras at all times, to watch over worshippers as they pray.

The former bank building’s main facade, once made entirely of glass panes allowing anyone to see inside, was replaced with bulletproof brick walls.

Two emergency exits were added to the ground floor and basement.

“Buffer zones” now exist between the main lobby and prayer room, allowing for smoother evacuations if needed.

Prior to the attack, the Mosque was always open, especially during prayer times, giving anyone access to the building.

The mosque is now locked.

Electronic access codes were added to the front doors

The doors lock electronically.

About 1,000 electronic entry passes have been distributed to regular congregants.

The $1.5 million in upgrades were paid for by the Muslim community.

Renovations and security upgrades were completed in March 2021.

( Collage credit : HïMY SYeD )


Cosmetic, yet meaningful, changes.

Sections of the old green carpet that were stained with blood had already been removed after the shooting, but now it’s been fully replaced.

The new carpet is red.

After the shooting, mosque leaders had left bullet holes in the walls — scars on the building that mirrored the scars left on the community itself.

Those scarred walls have since been plastered over and repainted a gleaming white.

The brightness is intentional :

“…to turn the page and have a sign of peace when you enter the mosque.

“Our objective is to forget the tragedy, and what happened here at the time.” — Mohamed Labidi, former president of the Islamic Cultural Centre of Québec

( Photo credit : CBC Montreal )


Six classrooms inside the Islamic Cultural Centre of Québec have been named in honour of the six Muslim men who were killed on Sunday January 29 2017.

Salle Abdelkarim Hassane.

( Photo credit : CBC Montreal )


Salle Ibrahima Barry.

( Photo credit : CBC Montreal )


Boufeldja Benabdallah nous dévoile des portraits en l’honneur des victimes. Ceux-ci seront ensuite remis aux familles respectives.

QICC wanted to display Aquil Virani’s paintings ahead of this year’s commemorations, even if it is unusual to have portraits hanging inside a masjid.

“When we look at each one, we feel that each man has something particular: humility … exuberance, kindness.

“He did good work.” — Boufeldja Benabdallah

Boufeldja Benabdallah, co-founder of the Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre, says he prefers to remember his ‘brothers’ the way they were in life, not in death.

“We don’t have iconography in Islam.

“There are no images of people or living creatures, but because it’s an exception, people understand that it’s for the good of remembrance.” — Boufeldja Benabdallah

( Photo credit : Patrice Laroche )


Saïd Akjour was shot in the shoulder during the deadly attack on Sunday January 29 2017.

«Ça fait longtemps que je ne suis pas retourné à la mosquée.

«Ça fait plusieurs mois, mais je rentre et c’est comme si c’était hier.

«Je revois mes frères tombés près de la porte.

«C’est une grande perte.

«Mais en même temps, c’est une fierté de réciter ces six noms-là [les victimes].

«Les martyrs de notre mosquée, de notre ville, et du Canada au complet.

«Je suis encore heureux et content de vivre ici à Québec malgré ce qui s’est passé.

«Je considère la ville de Québec, une belle ville.

«Après 5 ans je peux dire que je vois du positif.

«Pour se remettre sur pied, ça prend plusieurs mois, voire des années.

«Aujourd’hui, je suis plus fort que jamais.» — Saïd Akjour

( Photo credit : Les Coops de l’Information / Le Soleil )


On January 27 2022, sitting in the same prayer room where he was injured in the deadly shooting almost five years ago, Saïd Akjour says he remembers the horrific attack as if it happened yesterday.

“I can still see Aboubaker Thabti,” said Akjour, pointing to the spot where he last saw his fellow worshipper.

“I can still see Azzedine Soufiane.”

One by one, he continued listing the names of all of the men killed at the Islamic Cultural Centre on January 29 2017: Mamadou Tanou Barry, Abdelkrim Hassane, Ibrahima Barry and Khaled Belkacemi.

( Photo credit : Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec / CCIQ )


Les portraits des six personnes qui ont perdu la vie lors de l’attentat de la grande mosquée de Québec sont exposés à l’intérieur du lieu de culte pour quelques jours.

“These very beautiful images give a humanity that goes far beyond the pictures that we see reproduced every year in the file photos that get run.” — Nora Loreto, Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec

Visual artist, Aquil Virani, spent over two years painting the portraits of the six men who were killed in the shooting on January 29 2017 at the Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre in Quebec City.

“So I think a lot about how art can contribute to social change.

“Both from a visual artist and an art therapy perspective that art can change lives on a very personal basis.

“An artist can serve the needs of a community to depict, bring light, and create centrepieces to raise awareness and raise conversation about really important and significant events that have happened in the community.

“The idea for the project came obviously in the wake of the terrorist attack on January 29th 2017.

“As a Visual Artist and someone who paints portraits, I thought that it would be a good way to commemorate these six fallen men.

“The Art kind of harnesses a very genuine sense of solidarity.

“How can we use these portraits also to visiblize the real consequences of Islamophobia—the kind of undeniable consequences.

“I’m constantly thinking about the right way to do things. So the right way to do things means getting the consent of the person, or the family.

“Safia Hamoudi sent me an email saying, ‘Thank you so much for this work you are doing, this is a dear photo of Khaled that me and my family hold dear to our hearts.’

“It’s first and foremost a gift to the families to say that we see you, we see what has happened and we support you.

“And as a community we love you, and this is how we’re going to commemorate your husband or your father or your friend who has passed away.” — Aquil Virani, Visual Artist

( Photo credit : Steve Breton / Radio-Canada)


Ibrahima Barry, père de quatre enfants, qui travaillait pour le ministère du Revenu du Québec.

“One of the things I was thinking about, while painting the portraits was the fact that my dad brought me to mosque when I was a kid.

“Right that, that these men have children, wives, partners.

“There’s that question of, “Could it have been me? This kind of randomness of a senseless act.”

“My artistic skills and interests and passions should be of service to the community.

“And so I really took that approach when I was creating the portraits to say,

“What do these portraits need to show?”

“How can I make sure that the men who were killed, are at the center?”

“They were real people with real lives, real families, real dreams.”

“Yellow to represent Hope, it’s a positive colour.

“And Green is a very important colour in Islamic tradition.

“Green is mentioned a lot in the Qur’an, associated with Paradise and with growth.

“And then I also wanted to use this somewhat modern tradition of the Black and White portrait.

“Of suggesting a sense of respect that someone has passed away and that’s why the portrait is in Black and White.

“I think art is very powerful but I don’t think it’s magical.

“My portraits can’t undo the trauma and the violence.

“I’m hoping that the portraits can be a really small gesture, that for a minute the families feel like you know that others care.

“There is power in the gesture.

“But we also as a community, we want to move beyond gestures and beyond messages and beyond, beyond a few words in a tweet, and moved to really substantial action.” — Aquil Virani, Visual Artist

( Portrait Artist : Aquil Virani )


Le portrait de Khaled Belkacemi montré devant le Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec, en 2019. « Pour le montrer dans l’espace public pendant quelques heures », dit l’artiste Aquil Virani.

Khaled Belkacemi, qui était professeur de génie pédologique et agroalimentaire à l’Université Laval.

Le lendemain de la tuerie, un rassemblement de solidarité envers les musulmans de Québec avait été organisé à la station de métro Parc, à Montréal.

Alors domicilié dans la métropole, Aquil Virani y avait participé.

Sur place, il avait créé une œuvre collaborative, Stronger Together, une peinture représentant les mains d’une personne musulmane en train de prier.

Des dizaines de participants au rassemblement y avaient ajouté des messages d’espoir, de solidarité et de condoléances.

« Lors de cette vigile, j’avais rencontré une femme musulmane qui m’a mis en contact avec une de ses amies musulmanes de Québec, Amira Bahmed, qui m’a permis de livrer Stronger Together à la mosquée de Québec, où elle se trouve encore, et de rencontrer des membres d’une des familles endeuillées », dit l’artiste de 31 ans.

Au début, Aquil Virani trouvait qu’il était trop tôt pour un tel projet.

Il ne voulait pas brusquer les choses et tenait à le faire en partenariat avec la communauté musulmane de Québec.

« Zébida m’a par la suite contacté pour me dire que c’était une bonne idée, dit-il. On a alors demandé à chacune des familles si elles voulaient donner leur consentement et elles ont accepté. »

Les familles ont fourni des photos des victimes et, pendant trois ans, Aquil Virani a peint, sur toile, les portraits à l’acrylique et à la bombe aérosol.

« J’ai voulu exprimer les détails de l’expression exacte de la personne sur chaque photo. Le bonheur qui s’en dégageait souvent. »

« Quelques familles n’ont pas encore vu les portraits. Mais je suis allé, en 2019, montrer celui de Khaled Belkacemi à sa famille. C’était le premier que j’avais fini. Ils avaient apprécié ma visite. J’ai pu leur expliquer mes choix artistiques. »

Les œuvres de 30 po x 65 po seront présentées durant une semaine ou deux à la mosquée, prévoit l’artiste. « Ça dépendra des règles de la pandémie », dit-il.

« Le projet d’Aquil a été bien perçu par la communauté musulmane. C’était délicat et un long processus de communication. Ça s’est fait dans le respect. » — Amira Bahmed, musulmane de Québec

( Portrait Artist : Aquil Virani )


Mamadou Tanou Barry, père de deux enfants en bas âge, qui travaillait dans le domaine des technologies de l’information;

( Portrait Artist : Aquil Virani )


Aboubaker Thabti, père de deux jeunes enfants, qui travaillait dans une pharmacie.

( Portrait Artist : Aquil Virani )


Abdelkrim Hassane, père de trois enfants, qui travaillait comme analyste-programmeur pour le gouvernement du Québec.

( Portrait Artist : Aquil Virani )


Azzedine Soufiane, père de trois enfants, qui un épicier et un boucher et qui possédait et exploitait la Boucherie Assalam.

( Portrait Artist : Aquil Virani )


Thursday January 27 2022 news conference :

“My name is Nora Loreto, I am a member of the Citizen’s Committee that has organized the vigil every year since January 29th 2017.

“It feels a bit surreal to think that we’re already five years past that night.

“And to stand in this room with you all where the event happened, in this beautifully renovated space that’s quite open and bright; that is open and bright.

“At five years, it’s natural to ask what’s changed within Quebec society, within Canadian society?

“And this is the first time that we’ve organized this, since there has been an attack on a family, a Muslim family, in London, Ontario.

“The Afzaal Family.

“Four members of that family were killed by someone who targeted them for being Muslims.

“And we know, in Edmonton and in Calgary, Black Women who wear hijab are being targeted, regularly.

“And in fact this was announced again this week, this happened in 2022.

“There’s no question within Canadian society, within Quebec society, Islamophobia exists, it continues to exist.

“The Pandemic has exacerbated social divisions.

“And so we’ve seen other kinds of hatred as well.

“But the work that we do every year in the Citizen’s Committee in solidarity with Monsieur Benabdallah and the folks from the mosque who are in the room with us today, demonstrates that there is a solidarity that is necessary that can grow from these instances, and that can build community, and that can reject hatred, reject hate based violence and Islamophobia, in the spirit of saying never again, never again in Quebec City, never again in Quebec, and never again in Canada.

“And the vigil on Saturday night will show that solidarity.

“We’ve invited someone from the London Mosque to be with us and she’ll be speaking.

“And you will hear as well from some of the survivors as we’ve heard so eloquently today.

“So thank you very much for coming, and I’ll take your questions.”

“…This year…We’ve been talking about the fifth anniversary for three years now.

“It’s been something that we’ve been trying to make sure that we’re not spending all of our money every year, to have money left over for the fifth anniversary.

“And when we started to plan this, we met inside of a restaurant, which we can’t do now.

“But we did this in September to talk about what we wanted to do for the fifth anniversary.

“And I know for the folks here at the mosque, it was supposed to be a big event, welcome people inside.

“All day Saturday was supposed to be welcoming people inside in an open house.

“Of course everything’s closed.

“I think that has been the most difficult part for certainly the Citizen’s Committee.

“We’ve said this many times, that it’s really, really too bad that we haven’t been able to do the events that we were planning to do inside.

“Having said that, this Pandemic is affecting all of us, obviously.

“It’s still important to do this.

“We will be outside, it will be more difficult to be outside, but it’s very, very important.

“The moment that we can do this together in person, we will.”

( Photo credit : Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec / CCIQ )


La Grande mosquée de Québec, comme tous les lieux de culte de la province, est présentement fermée.

Ainsi, les commémorations de la tragédie, qui auront lieu tout au long de la semaine, vont se faire en formule virtuelle uniquement.

Plusieurs conférences, webinaires et autres activités virtuelles seront organisés.

La programmation complète sera dévoilée prochainement.

«Quelques personnes de Polytechnique et du collège Dawson vont venir nous rejoindre en visioconférence pour qu’on puisse discuter du problème des armes et de leur contrôle», révèle M. Benabdallah.

«Les commémorations vont culminer avec un rassemblement ici à la mosquée, samedi, le maire va être présent et les journalistes aussi. Malheureusement à cause des mesures sanitaires le public ne sera pas admis», conclut le président du centre culturel islamique de Québec.

( Photo credit : Les Coops de l’Information / Le Soleil )


Selma Yahiaoui, who agreed to be featured in a Radio-Canada documentary for the anniversary commemorating the tragedy at the mosque, does not want to show her face, out of fear.

Via Catou MacKinnon, CBC Montreal and Radio-Canada :

That night, Selma Yahiaoui was praying on the second floor of the mosque, a section reserved for women.

She described the mosque as tranquil, a place where friendships were made.

“We were never scared here.”

But she was scared that evening in the women’s prayer room, on the floor above that of the men, where the carnage occurred.

The then 34 year-old was alone after two other women left.

While she was alone, she heard footsteps behind her.

The noise came from a door that women never use, since it communicates with the staircase that leads to the men’s prayer room.

At the time, Selma did not think it was an intruder.

She greeted him.

“He had his hood on his head. His silhouette was dark […] It was our ghost.”

The person didn’t return the usual greeting and turned back.

Today, with hindsight, she is convinced of it: the shooter went upstairs via the men’s staircase, before going down to commit his crime.

“It’s as if they said one wasn’t enough.”

Moments after the end of prayers, Yahiaoui, said she heard gunshots ring out beneath her, and that sense of peace was forever shattered.

On the TV that transmits live images from the men’s prayer room, she saw it all.

Yahiaoui said she watched what was happening on the floor below her through a small screen in the women’s prayer room.

“I saw everything,” she said, her voice breaking as she recounted the events.

She trembles as she recalls police coming, pointing guns at her, then taking her downstairs to men’s section and then the horror.

Yahiaoui rushed downstairs, desperately searching for her husband, who she later found out had not been injured.

Despite the fact they both walked away unharmed, she said her trust in people has evaporated.

“Every person who smiles at me, each moment, I have doubts,” she said, fighting tears.

Yahiaoui said simply walking down the aisles of a grocery store, she now has the unshakeable impression she is being stalked.

“Before, I could go out in the street at night. I have never been afraid. But now, it’s not like before. It’s finish. I go outside, I look from left to right because I have a kind of fear inside.”

Selma feels the fear even in her prayers.

Since the attack, she has turned off the lights in the living room so that passers-by cannot see her, or she prays in another room.

Selma Yahiaoui communicated the above in her victim impact statement to Québec Superior Court Justice François Huot on the seventh day of the shooter’s pre-sentencing hearing in April 2018.

( Photo credit : Maxime Corneau / Radio-Canada )


Louiza Mohamed Said became a widow on Sunday January 29 2017.

Her husband, Abdelkrim Hassane, was killed in the Quebec City mosque shooting.

The two had been together for 18 years before his death and had three daughters, ages 10, nine and two.

On Tuesday April 17 2018, Louiza Mohamed Said, widow of Abdelkrim Hassane, read her victim impact statement, through heavy sobs, inside the courtroom of Justice François Huot.

She asked the judge to give his murderer an “exemplary” punishment.

Here is her victim impact statement, translated from French by CBC reporter Sabrina Marandola:

“I am Mrs. Mohamed Said Louiza, widow of Mr. Hassane Abdelkrim, may God have his soul, one of the six deceased in the Quebec mosque killing.

“I would first like to thank you, your honour, for this opportunity through which I will have the possibility to share with you my thoughts and feelings.

“Allow me as well, your honour, to acknowledge the dedication and commitment of our Crown prosecutors, from the first moments that misfortune struck us, without forgetting the municipal police forces.

“I would like, as well, to thank the journalists, present here today, without whom our message would have no impact.

“My statement, your honour, is based on three points.

“The first point concerns my opinion regarding the forgiveness asked by the murderer of my husband.

“The second point relates to my anxieties caused by the murder of my husband.

“Finally, the last point of my statement relates to my expectations of this encounter.

“With respect to the forgiveness asked by the perpetrator of the murderous attack of January 29, 2017, I think that forgiving he who assassinated, without mercy and with fury, my life companion and the father of my three daughters, is not my major concern at this time and in the time to come.

“The day of January 29 was supposed to be an ordinary day.

“I was far from imagining that my life would be turned upside down forever.

“I remember just after lunch, Abdelkrim had shown his daughters a video of a sick, courageous, little boy.

“He said to the girls, “I want you to be courageous like this little boy.”

“It was as if he sensed his death.

“A few hours later, Abdelkrim had gone out for his Sunday jog and then to the mosque for his evening prayer, his last, unfortunately.

“Abdelkrim was a man who was devout, decent and sincere.

“He was also convivial and full of humour.

“Everyone appreciated him.

“At around 7 p.m., I started to worry about Abdelkrim, given that he was running later than usual.

“In the meantime, a Quebecoise friend from Montreal had called me to ask if my husband had gone to the mosque and she asked me to turn on the TV.

“That was the moment that I understood that something bad had happened to Abdelkrim.

“One of his friends came over afterwards to take me to the hospital while telling me that Abdelkrim was injured, which was not exactly true.

“Once at the hospital, the doctor asked me several questions and eventually told me Abdelkrim was indeed dead.

“I begged him to do something to treat him.

“I was ready to give a kidney or whatever else was needed to save him.

“Alas, it was too late.

“I thought I was living a nightmare.

“I felt as though everything around me abruptly collapsed.

“Dejected, I returned home and I still couldn’t believe that Abdelkrim was indeed dead.

“I had to be strong for my daughters.

“I thought about what words I would use to tell them the news without shocking them too much.

“Believe me, nothing is more difficult than telling little girls about the death of their father.

“I cried in silence, because I had to remain calm.

“I had to hide my sadness and my disarray so that they wouldn’t suspect anything.

“Once home, the eldest couldn’t sleep; she had asked me where her father was.

“I told her he was with a friend and that he would be late.

“She had trouble breathing the moment her father was murdered.

“The next day, I brought my daughters to school and I was still reflecting on how to tell them the truth.

“How do you tell them they won’t see their father anymore?

“I mustered up my courage and told the girls about the death of their father, all the while reminding them of his last words of advice — to be courageous.

“Since his loss, nothing is like before, because nothing replaces the love and affection of a father, especially a father as loving as Abdelkrim.

Chikibeille, les abeilles and bouboula — those were the nicknames he gave them.

“After that sad and unfortunate day, all the activities we organized, such as dances, picnics, or trips, all stopped.

“The many projects we had planned were annihilated.

“He won’t be there to share in the joys and sorrows of his three daughters.

“He won’t be present at their graduations or weddings.

“My youngest will have no memory of her father and that is so unfair!

“Right now, I’m focusing all my efforts on the safety and well-being of my daughters.

“What preoccupies me, right now and always, is how to remain strong to raise my three daughters and make them blossom in the absence of a loving father who only had eyes for his daughters.

“What I care about, and what terrifies me the most, and which will until the end of my existence, is that the day will come where it will be announced that he who blackened our joys, oppressed our souls with an immense sadness and condemned our lives to an enduring pain, will see his sentence reduced or will be freed and, thereby, cleared of his atrocities.

“The coming of this day would be a second death for our victims and for those who were spared.

“The coming of that day would be a death with no peace for our departed.

“Never could I have imagined the horror and panic that my husband lived in those last seconds before his death.

“But I am convinced of one thing: that all his thoughts were with his three daughters.

“Your honour, I implore you, forever preserve the memory of our deceased and our victims; support our cause and that of millions of Canadians, the cause to condemn terrorism, Islamophobia and all forms of violence and hate at the heart of Canadian society.

“I use the terms terrorism and Islamophobia, your honour, because I believe the assassin is one, in one way or another.

“He succeeded in making my daughters believe that in peaceful Canada and Quebec, welcoming and tolerant, there was a place for horror, violence and murderous intolerance.

“Since the killing on January 29, 2017, my eldest daughter, aged 10 and a half, and my [other] daughter, aged nine, are terrified of the idea that their mother, being of the Muslim faith just as their deceased father was, risks suffering the same fate as their father.

“I speak, your honour, of terrorism and Islamophobia because, I believe the killing of January 29, 2017, is the deliberate concretisation of a hate crime aiming, on one hand, to terrify the Muslim community and, on the other, to affirm the categorical rejection of a principle in society: living together.

“Your honour, I beg you to do all that is in your power so that such a tragedy never happens again and that the perpetrator of this hate crime be punished in an exemplary manner.

“I implore you, your honour, to let justice and the appeasement within us prevail in this beautiful and majestic country that is Canada.

“These are my thoughts and feelings that I wanted to express and share and that kept my mind and heart going during the tumultuous times of the hearing.

“Thank you for your attention.”

Louiza Mohamed Said, widow of Abdelkrim Hassane

( Photo credit : Julia Page / CBC )


Said El-Amari doesn’t usually go to the mosque on Sundays.

But he made an exception on Sunday January 29 2017 to attend Isha prayer at the Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec.

“The images still haunt me.”

It began minutes after the prayers ended.

The then 40-year-old father of four was heading toward the exit when he heard the shots and quickly sought refuge in a corner.

“Several others had crammed in there to hide, I was the last one.”

When he felt a bullet hit his stomach, he remained standing, his body limp, leaning against a wall.

“I knew I was in the killer’s sights, I didn’t move, hoping the shooter would think I was already dead.”

It worked.

After emptying a cartridge of bullets on the worshippers, the gunman fled.

“I heard people moving in the mosque and I collapsed to the ground.”

El-Amari spent two months in the hospital, including four weeks in a medically induced coma.

When he awoke, he was told the names of the victims and details of what happened at the mosque that evening.

“It was very difficult,”

He had undergone surgery and now has limited mobility, preventing him from returning to his job as a taxi driver.

He was set to see a psychologist to assess his mental trauma.

By May of 2017, El Amari had returned to Grand Mosque of Quebec only three times since the shooting.

“It took me several weeks” to work up the courage the first time.

Security has been increased.

During each prayer, a man sits close to the entrance and keeps an eye on video from a dozen newly installed security cameras.

Members now need an electronic key to enter the premises and other security measures are also in place.

“The extra security helps a little, but there is always this fear.” — Said El-Amari

( Photo credit : Arab News )


«Les mosquées au Québec, avant, ne barraient jamais leurs portes.

«Aujourd’hui, toutes les portes sont barrées.

«On ne peut pas construire une paix sociale fondée sur l’idée qu’on a peur de l’autre.» — Ghayda Hassan

“I used to walk around the park with my friend who wears the veil and there wasn’t any problem.” — Khadija Zahid

Khadija Zahid, who wears the hijab, immigrated to Quebec from Morocco in 2007, and always felt she had a place here.

But she’s become unsettled by the growing number of safety precautions she has to take as a Muslim living in Quebec City.

She now requires a magnetic pass to enter the Islamic Cultural Centre, one of several security measures the mosque implemented after the shooting.

“A mosque should be open to everyone.

“Even non-Muslims are welcome.

“But this chip, it’s scary.

“It means there could be another [attack].” — Khadija Zahid

“It’s probably one of the safest cities to live in if you’re not Muslim.

“But if you are, you just have to be careful.

“People [aren’t afraid] anymore of being a racist.

“They have a smokescreen they can hide behind.” — Sana Labidi

( Photo credit : Julia Page )


Brian Semple is a fifth generation Scottish-Quebecer who converted to Islam in 2003.

Semple’s friend, Azzeddine Soufiane, was the among the six men killed on Sunday January 29 2017.

Once Semple got over the shock of his friends’s death, he pledged not to avoid the mosque, but rather to use it as a place of dialogue.

Semple is often called on to welcome English-speaking groups who visit the Sainte-Foy mosque, a regular occurrence since the attack.

“Once you get to know people everything changes.

“That’s what we try to do now: get people to come and meet us.

“Not everyone is interested, and I can understand that, but to build bridges is very important.” — Brian Semple

( Photo credit : Julia Page )


Mohamed Khabar a choisi le Québec pour sa qualité de vie il y a 13 ans et a ouvert son salon de barbier à Sainte-Foy.

Six de ses amis sont morts le 29 janvier 2017.

Lui a reçu deux balles, dont certains fragments sont toujours coincés dans son pied.

Bullet fragments from the shooting still prevent Mohamed Khabar from standing more than three hours a day.

He previously sat down to speak with Le téléjournal Québec / ICI Radio-Canada and recently sat down with CBC Montreal and also spoke separately with the Montreal Gazette :

Mohamed Khabar had stopped by the mosque that night, as he often did after closing his barbershop.

After prayers, still inside the prayer hall, he was chatting with friends about soccer: Morocco’s loss to Egypt at the Africa Cup of Nations.

“We were talking about … the mistakes the referee and the coaches had made,”

“We were just chatting about that, when we heard a big noise.”

Khabar says he froze as he watched the gunman shoot at men and children around him.

Khabar tried to rush the shooter along with Soufiane, but was shot twice.

He was shot twice, in the leg and the foot.

As he lay there bleeding he says he thought, this is it.

He wouldn’t be able to get away if the gunman came closer.

“At that point, I thought of my son who was two months old. I thought of my wife, I thought of my family,

“I was waiting to die. I thought of my son, who was two months old. Of my wife. Of my family in Morocco.”

Khabar managed to make it to the stairs with a few others and hopped down on his good leg to the basement, to hide in the electrical room.

Still, he feared the gunman would follow his trail of blood.

He was certain his bloody footprints would lead the shooter to him.

But the gunman didn’t return.

“Upstairs I was brave, but when I was downstairs, it was a terror like I never experienced,” Khabar said in his small barbershop located near the mosque.

Five years on, Mohamed Khabar is still in pain.

Bullet fragments in his foot still hurt, preventing him from standing more than three hours a day, impeding his work as a barber.

It’s difficult for him to see family of the dead, because it makes him wonder whether he could have done more to save someone’s father, or husband.

Sometimes, he still feels “blocked in my head, like nothing has changed. … When you see someone die in front of you, it’s hard. Your eyes cannot forget it.”

Five years later, Khabar thinks the building is more secure.

Khabar says his life is not like before — beyond running his barbershop, he’s also meeting with politicians, advocating for gun control and denouncing Islamophobia.

Last year he travelled to Ottawa along with Benabdallah and others for a gun-control rally.

“You feel like you’re targeted by laws … that don’t help you forget what happened at the mosque,”

Five years after he was shot, Mohamed Khabar still has trouble standing for long periods while he works at his barbershop.

The anniversary of the tragedy is painful.

Sometimes he can’t speak.

But he has found talking, and doing, helps to release the pain.

“In Quebec, you try to build bridges, but there’s always something to remind you of it all, like the discriminatory Bill 21 law, or debates on reasonable accommodation, or other idiocies. You think: ‘What are people thinking here?’ ”

There’s a vocal minority that is hateful and racist, and a silent majority that isn’t. That needs to be reversed, he said.

It’s time the majority spoke up and did their part.

“We’ve already paid the price, with our orphans and our widows and our dead, yet still we’re paying.”

Even though he still has pain when he stands for too long, and replays the shooting in his mind, Khabar has hope too.

He hopes that his son, who is now five, will grow up feeling safe.

“I’m an eternal optimist, I think things will change.”

( Photo credit : Jacques Boissinot / Montreal Gazette )


Hakim Chambaz near his home in the Québec City suburb of Lévis, Wednesday January 19 2022.

Via Montreal Gazette :

A year after the attack, Chambaz was still tormented by nightmares and flashbacks.

He remembered he had meant to bring his children with him to the mosque that night, but decided not to at the last minute.

When they heard the first shots, they thought it was firecrackers.

Outside in the snow, Mamadou Tanou Barry and Ibrahima Barry, the fathers to six children, had been shot to death.

When the gunman entered, “It was panic,”

People were scrambling in all directions.

The shooter was quiet, methodical.

Chambaz saw a two-year-old crawling toward her wounded father.

He scooped her up, shielding her with his body, and took shelter behind a narrow column.

“To this day, I don’t know what propelled me to do that.”

It was Imam Nizar Ghali’s young daughter who tried to run across the room to reach her father after he was shot, but was cradled by Hakim Chambaz instead who then hid her behind a pillar.

He saw professor Khaled Belkacemi shot and killed, and then his good friend, Abdelkrim Hassane.

He saw Aboubaker Thabti shot in the head and Azzedine Soufiane, the kindly grocer, executed after trying to take down the gunman.

Chambaz cradled the girl and waited for their turn to die.

Then the shooter suddenly left.

( Imam Nizar Ghali, who had just completed leading Isha Prayer on the night of the Quebec City mosque shooting, would survive. )

“In a city as peaceful and beautiful as Quebec, it was a tragedy that surprised everyone.

“It plunged us into a profound anguish.

“These were people that were very close to us, that we saw almost every day at the mosque.”

He avoided other people, friends, the media, to quell the pain.

Then, at an event commemorating the one-year anniversary of the January 29 2017 massacre, he was approached by Celeste Corcoran.

She lost both legs in the bombing at the 2013 Boston Marathon that killed three and injured more than 260.

She came to Quebec City as part of the One World Strong organization created in the wake of the bombing to support survivors of mass attacks and hate crimes.

“I thought, ‘Oh my God, I still have my legs, and this woman, she doesn’t even know us, and she travelled all the way from Boston to Quebec City — in January,

“And the ones who did those bombings (in Boston) were Muslims.’

“At that moment, I saw someone who had been in my place, reaching out a hand to us.”

Chambaz was so moved he joined One World Strong, and began travelling to the scenes of mass terror.

He went to Parkland, Florida in 2018 in the aftermath of a high school shooting that killed 17 to give support to parents and siblings.

He travelled to London, England to meet with survivors of the 2005 bombing attacks on the transit system that killed 39 and injured more than 700.

Helping others, he found, gave his survival meaning, and gave him strength.

A week after the shooting that killed 11 at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh in 2018, Chambaz and three friends drove 14 hours to comfort survivors from the Jewish community.

“They started crying. They couldn’t believe it.”

In March 2019, a gunman killed 51 people and injured 40 at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Money was raised so Chambaz, who has started his own outreach group, called Resilience Canada 2017, could take the 30-hour flight to speak with the survivors.

They were shocked, and happy, to meet a survivor from the other side of the world.

“I said, ‘All I can tell you is your life has changed, as mine did. But you need to learn to accept this change, and try to move on with a positive spirit. We don’t live in a perfect world. Terrible things happen. But you can stay strong and rise up against the terrorism.

“Religion or skin colour, that’s not important. The most important thing is that humans can have the hope of living in happiness, and [living] well.”

( Photo credit : Jacques Boissinot / Montreal Gazette )


Hakim Chambaz, Abdelhak Achouri, Ahmed Cheddadi, Boufeldja Benabdallah, outside Tree of Life / Or L’Simcha Congregation, Pittsburgh.

For leaders of the Quebec City mosque, the killings of 11 people at a Pittsburgh synagogue on Saturday October 27 2018 hit close to home.

Boufeldja Benabdallah immediately reached out to members of Quebec City’s small Jewish community — a group that came to the aid of the local Muslim community when the mosque was attacked.

Next day, CCIQ’s Board released this statement :

« Communiqué de presse suite à la tragédie de la synagogue de Pittsburgh

Québec, le 28 octobre 2018

Le Centre culturel islamique de Québec présente ses sincères condoléances aux familles éprouvées par la mort dramatique de leurs proches, et présente ses pensées de compassion aux personnes blessées dans la tragédie qu’a vécue hier (27 octobre 2018) à la synagogue de Pittsburgh.

La folie des hommes a encore une fois frappé nos voisins juifs de Pittsburgh et frères humains qui ne faisaient que prier dans un lieu sacré et intouchable qui est la synagogue.

Cet acte est d’une énorme gravité et ne peut nous laisser indifférents.

Ôter la vie de onze personnes juives dans leur lieu de prière et blesser plusieurs autres par cette personne haineuse et antisémite, est condamnable et inadmissible au 21e siècle.

Cela doit appeler les autorités à sévir de façon exemplaire contre ce genre d’acte grave et dangereux, mettant à mal les différentes communautés de notamment celles de foi juive.

Notre Mosquée à Québec a connu, le 29 janvier 2017, la même tragédie qui a enlevé la vie à six pères de famille et blessés plusieurs personnes.

Aujourd’hui, nous comprenons très bien la douleur que les familles juives ressentent et nous sommes de tout coeur avec elles.

Nous appelons toutes les personnes de bonne volonté de la communauté musulmane de la Ville de Québec d’être en pensée avec les familles dans le deuil, et avec tous les habitants de la ville de Pittsburgh, suite à cette tragédie.

Le Conseil d’administration



The Islamic cultural Centre of Quebec presents its heartfelt condolences to the families affected by the tragic death of their loved ones, and presents his thoughts of compassion to the people wounded in the tragedy that was experienced yesterday (October 27, 2018) at the synagogue of Pittsburgh.

The madness of men once again struck our Jewish neighbours of Pittsburgh and Human brothers who were only praying in a sacred and untouchable place which is the synagogue.

This act is of enormous gravity and cannot leave us indifferent.

To remove the lives of 11 Jewish people in their place of prayer and injure many others by this hateful and anti-Semitic person, is reprehensible and unacceptable in the 21st century.

This must call on the authorities to crack down on this kind of serious and dangerous act, putting the Jewish community of faith in harm’s way.

Our mosque in Quebec City experienced on January 29th, 2017 the same tragedy that took the lives of six fathers and wounded several people.

Today we understand very well the pain that Jewish families feel and we are wholeheartedly with them.

We call upon all the people of goodwill of the Muslim community of Quebec City to be in thought with the families in mourning, and with all the inhabitants of the city of Pittsburgh, following this tragedy.

The Board of Directors


One week after the October 27 2018 shooting inside the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, Hakim Chambaz, Abdelhak Achouri, Ahmed Cheddadi, three survivors of the Quebec Mosque Attack, along with CCIQ president Boufeldja Benabdallah, drove 14 hours to offer comfort to the Jewish community.

“They were shocked, in a good way.” — Ahmed Cheddadi

“We have the same context. A mosque, or whatever, a synagogue, a church, it’s the same thing.” — Hakim Chambaz

( Photo credit : Dave Fortier / One World Strong )


Saïd Akjour has one passion that’s followed him throughout his life: running.

His passion for the sport meant when two bombs exploded near the finish line at the 2013 Boston Marathon, Akjour felt an instant connection to the victims.

That year, he ran a 10-kilometre race in honour of the three people killed and more than 260 injured.

Akjour never imagined that, a country away and years later, he too would become a target of hate.

On the anniversary of the mosque shooting, in January 2018, survivors of the Boston bombing travelled to Quebec City as part of the One World Strong Foundation (OWS), which was founded in the wake of the terror attack.

Co-founder Dave Fortier remembered how that day, Akjour brought medals of his past races.

This prompted the Bostonian to ask the big question.

“‘Would you like to run the Boston Marathon with us in 2019?’” — Dave Fortier

Akjour said he was game.

Fortier knew it was one thing to say yes — and quite another to follow through.

“But I knew it in my heart that he would do it.” — Dave Fortier

That became a road trip for Ahmed Cheddadi, Abdelhak Achouri and Hakim Chambaz, to Boston, to watch and cheer on Saïd Akjour in the marathon.

“I am very happy because I feel that I am doing something.

“I am in action.

“I am participating in something great.” — Ahmed Cheddadi

For Achouri, the trip to Boston was about more than supporting Akjour in the 42-kilometre race — it was also a chance to represent Quebec City on the world stage.

“We want to present this image of Quebec to the world.

“It cannot be defined as a place of extremism.” — Abdelhak Achouri

The day before the race the four men stood in front of the finish line in Boston with messages of peace.

They held a minute of silence in front of the memorial being built for the 2013 victims, holding up the signs they had brought along, denouncing racism and violence.

  • ” From Quebec Against Violence “
  • ” From Quebec Against Islamophobia & Racism “
  • ” De Québec Contre La Haine “
  • ” Oui, Au Vivre Ensemble “

Heavy rain fell over the Boston area on the morning of the marathon creating muddy, slippery conditions for runners waiting at the athletes’ village.

Akjour was in the last wave and managed to stay out of the rain, which had stopped by the time he started running, just after 11 a.m.

Saïd Akjour was determined he’d make it to the finish line without walking.

“I can already see the finish line.” — Saïd Akjour

Four hours, 27 minutes and 16 seconds, and 42.2 kilometres later, he was there.

Hakim Chambaz, Abdelhak Achouri, Saïd Akjour and Ahmed Cheddadi celebrated in Saïd’s victory, each taking a turn at wearing the prestigious medal.

Taking pleasure in life again is becoming easier for the mosque attack survivors.

Back in Quebec City, just four days after the Boston marathon, the four friends attended Friday prayers at the mosque — the same mosque where the shooting happened.

On this Friday, parents laughed as they watched their children run around the room on a day off from school.

( Triptych photographs : Abdelhak Achouri and Julia Page )


Rachid Raffa chose to settle in Quebec City after leaving Algeria.

But as his encounters with Islamophobia become more commonplace, he’s come to feel less at home.

“When I came to this country in 1975 I got off at the wrong airport.

“I should have landed elsewhere in Canada.” — Rachid Raffa

Raffa has been an active member of Quebec City’s Muslim community for decades.

In the 1990s, he was president of the Islamic Cultural Centre, which later opened a mosque in the suburb of Sainte-Foy.

He still prays there regularly.

More recently, he’s watched with disgust as mosques around the city are increasingly targeted by willful damage and property defacement.

Anti-Muslim tracts were plastered over three prayer spaces in 2014.

Some had their windows smashed the following year.

Raffa’s sense of dread deepened when, during Ramadan 2016, a pig’s head was dumped outside the Islamic Cultural Centre with the words ‘Bonne Appétit’ [sic] in a card.

“My bus goes by the mosque and I often told my wife ‘May God protect this place.’ But it happened.” — Rachid Raffa

The social harmony promised by Quebec’s leaders after the shooting has failed to materialize.

In its place are acrimonious political debates over identity and religious accommodation, a surge in activity of far-right groups and a spike in the number of reported hate crimes.

“Everything that touches Muslims has become explosive.

“And we are fed up.

“I am fed up.

“I am completely overwhelmed that this tragedy has led to the rise of racist rhetoric in the public sphere, to the complete indifference of Quebec’s elite.” — Rachid Raffa

( Photo credit : Julia Page )


In addition to Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack, January 29 2022 is ALSO Canada’s first federally designated National Day of Action Against Islamophobia.

To coincide with the second of today’s designations, Islamic Relief Canada published this report :

In Their Words: Untold Stories of Islamophobia in Canada.”

Aymen Derbali’s story of survival and journey since, seen above, is found on page 11.

“When we hear about Islamophobia, it’s often in the context of violent attacks.

“Yet what is less well known are the daily incidents and microaggressions that Muslims regularly experience in all spheres of their lives.

“By publishing our report, we wanted to share these stories and show the long-term effects of hate.” — Reyhana Patel, Head of Communications and Government Relations at Islamic Relief Canada

Omar Mosleh’s recent interview with Aymen Derbali for The Toronto Star is necessary reading.

“Five years ago, on this day, six Muslims were murdered during evening prayers at a mosque in Quebec City.

“19 others were injured, including Aymen Derbali, who I spoke to earlier this week.

“Because of one person’s hate, 17 children lost their fathers.

“I was humbled by Aymen’s unshakable faith and personal strength in light of what he’s been through.

“I’m grateful he’s alive today to share his story and relay the horror of that day on behalf of those that didn’t make it.” — Omar Mosleh, Edmonton, Alberta

While Omar Mosleh updated Canadians on Aymen Derbali, Al Jazeera did likewise for a global audience.

( Image source : Islamic Relief Canada )


In March 2018, paramedic Andréanne Leblanc, 31, was found dead.

She had been on duty on the night of the Quebec Mosque attack and was a first responder.

She is often regarded as the Seventh Victim of the shooting.

Her suicide highlighted the lack of mental health resources for first responders and helped inform:

Supporting Canada’s Public Safety Personnel: An Action plan on Post Traumatic Stress Injuries.’

The April 2019 announcement brought with it $29 million in new funding.

Andréanne Leblanc was one of the first paramedics to arrive at the bloody scene.

She and her work partner transported one of the victims to hospital.

In the fear and confusion of that frigid winter night, as police hunted the armed and fleeing killer, they were told to prepare in case there were other victims.

That night, after the mosque shooting, Leblanc and her work partner arrived back at the station long after the other paramedics.

She missed the initial debriefing during which her colleagues shared what they had experienced and were feeling.

Lucie Roy said her daughter had to wait two or three days for a debriefing session that lasted just one hour.

“When you’re a paramedic, it’s difficult to go seek help, particularly when you don’t have a family doctor.

“Everyone at the emergency room already knows you; it’s you who takes the injured to the hospital.” — Lucie Roy

( Photo credit : Fournie Par La Famille / Le Soleil )


Andréanne Leblanc, 31, was found dead in March 2018, dressed in her paramedic’s uniform.

Le soir du 29 janvier 2017, elle travaillait à Québec quand un appel pas comme les autres est entré. Bain de sang à la Grande Mosquée.

Andréanne a fait son boulot.

«Elle a transporté un blessé par balles, il y en avait cinq ou six. Elle l’a transporté à l’hôpital et on lui a demandé de rester en alerte avec son collègue au cas où il y en aurait d’autres. Le meurtrier était en fuite.»

Lucie Roy a envoyé un texto à sa fille.

-Est-ce que tu es intervenue?


Elle n’en a pas dit plus.

«Après, elle m’a dit «tu as été la seule, ce soir-là, à avoir pensé à moi»».

She was on duty that frigid January night when she received the urgent call to head to the mosque in Quebec City’s Sainte-Foy district.

She was the first to arrive on the scene of the deadly mass shooting.

Leblanc’s task was to treat the wounded aboard her ambulance as they were rushed to hospital.

Lucie Roy, Leblanc’s mother, shared with CBC :

“When she did this [took her own life], she wore her paramedic’s uniform,”

“It was a clear message telling us that she loved her job, but it was difficult.”

Leblanc, in that final gesture, wanted to send the message that paramedics save lives,

“But maybe someone should take care of them, as well,”

“What led her to this torment was post-traumatic stress that was not caught in time,” said Roy.

Lucie Roy said that in addition to the mosque shooting, her daughter had to deal with three suicides in four years of fellow paramedics in Quebec City and Pointe-à-la-Croix in the Gaspé, where she used to work with Tremblay-Roy.

Roy said one hour of counselling after the mosque shooting was not enough.

ONE hour.

First responders must have available, and must accept, the help they need, she said.

Rev. Eric Lukacs, speaking at Leblanc’s funeral :

“As a pastor who works in a field where burnout is high, and who has spent a fair amount of time with first responders and their families (police, paramedics, firefighters), I can tell you that in order for someone to want to take care of themselves and “get better”, they need to have people around them who think they are worth it – like really worth it.

“Because they see so much stuff around them that eventually sticks to them, they are in real danger of thinking otherwise.

“That’s what it looks like when PTSD takes over.

“You lose sight of who you are as a person until you see yourself as less than a person.

“You need people around you who see you as more than a uniform.

“You need to have people around you who see you as you – as human, as beautiful, as wanted.”

Le Soleil :

Andréanne a été retrouvée sans vie le 15 mars, dans son uniforme.

Elle a laissé cinq lettres pour ses proches, sans vraiment expliquer pourquoi elle a fait ça, ce qui l’a conduit dans une telle détresse.

Dans l’une d’elles, elle écrit «au moins, j’ai sauvé des vies.»

Elle avait 31 ans.

( Photo credit : Submitted by Lucie Roy / CBC )


Friday morning, August 4 2017 : Quebec City Mayor Régis Labeaume points at a map as he announces the establishment of a Muslim cemetery in Quebec City.

“For over 400 years, Quebec has been a welcoming city for all cultures, languages and religions.

“The French concept of “vivre ensemble” or living together, is fundamental to the success of our society.

“The cemetery fulfilled the idea of “vivre ensemble” in all its meanings.” — Régis Labeaume, Mayor of Québec City

“An important and courageous step for dignity and decency. Congratulations Mayor Labeaume for taking action.” — Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

Quebec City’s first mosque dates from the late 1970s.

But families had to travel to Laval, 260 kilometres away, to bury their dead.

Boufeldja Benabdallah said now families don’t have to go to Laval to bury their loved ones in the Muslim cemetery there.

“Many Muslim families in Quebec City will no longer have to endure the sorrow of the remoteness of their deceased.”

“We will die in peace.

“Every person who dies, and takes a plot, it will be belong to them for eternity. It’s a big change in our psychology.” — Boufeldja Benabdallah, CCIQ’s interim co-ordinator for the cemetery project

“Since Monday [July 31 2017], we’ve worked day and night, city staff, volunteers, to realize this project.

“It is a historic day for Quebec City.

“Today [Friday August 4 2017], we are reaping the benefits of 20 years of hard work.” — Mohamed Labidi, President of the Centre

Thirty six hours later, Labidi’s car was torched while parked outside his home.

The torching took place on Sunday August 6 2017 outside Mohamed Labidi’s home, about 36 hours after he appeared alongside Quebec City Mayor Régis Labeaume to celebrate the sale of city-owned land to the Muslim community for the creation of a cemetery.

Police said they were considering the torching a hate-related crime because they believe the suspects targeted Labidi because he is Muslim, although the arsonists didn’t know his role at the centre.

Police initially kept the incident from the public, saying it was in the interests of both the Labidi family and the police investigation.

The mosque went public three weeks later.

( Photo credit : Jacques Boissinot )


Imam Hassan Guillet, seen here with his wife, Nathalie Groulx, said the Muslim community in Quebec City is happy and relieved to know land has been set aside for a long-awaited cemetery.

Imam Hassan Guillet speaking outside the Sainte Foy mosque on Friday August 4 2017 after the Jumah prayer service :

“People were so happy, they couldn’t contain it.

“It tells you how much it’s important for Muslim people to be able to be part of this society — and to be accepted, as is.”

“I have tears in my eyes.”

Imam Guillet’s wife, Nathalie Groulx, said one Moroccan-born woman couldn’t stop crying throughout the Friday sermon, after hearing the news that land for the burial ground had been found.

Previously the choices were to be buried in a Catholic cemetery, or other cemetery outside the Islamic faith, to be buried in Laval or to even be buried in one’s country of origin.

“Our roots are going deep in this land, our dead should be able to be buried in this land too.” — Imam Hassan Guillet

( Photo credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Boufeldja Benabdallah, stands in front of the Quebec City Muslim Cemetery. The Cemetery director and co-founder of the Quebec City Islamic Cultural Centre says it took 22 years to secure a burial site dedicated to his community.

Explaining to Radio-Canada,

“It was 22 years of fighting, research and meetings,

“People were burying their loved ones at the Muslim cemetery in Montreal.

Following the Quebec Mosque shootings, bodies of five of the six Muslim men killed were sent to their countries of origin. The sixth was buried in Laval, Quebec, which at the time had the only two Muslim cemeteries in Quebec.

A few months after the attack, Benabdallah found a potential cemetery site in Saint-Apollinaire, a town of 6,000 about 45 kilometres south of Quebec City.

The mayor of Saint-Apollinaire approved an Islamic cemetery, but a group of residents protested the project.

The site in which the community was planning to open a cemetery, southwest of Quebec City, became the focal point of a few objectors.

Under a former provincial law, this raised the need for a municipal referendum of nearby residents.

St. Apollinaire is a town of 6,400 people.

70 were eligible to vote, 49 registered to have their say, and only 35 exercised the right on July 16 2017.

After intense media coverage, the vote resulted in 16 people voting for the cemetery, and 19 voting against it.

The small town had rejected their request for the cemetery by just two votes.

Benabdallah instead got the ear of Quebec City’s then-mayor Régis Labeaume, who said he was determined to work with the city’s Muslim community in an effort to heal and move forward after the 2017 attack.

In the days after the shooting rampage at the mosque, Labeaume promised to find a suitable site for a Muslim cemetery.

“We are working with them to see what they need. We will help them,” he said at the time.

Labeaume later found a parcel of land on Frank-Carrel Street in the same Sainte-Foy neighbourhood as the Quebec City mosque.

“He knew the difficulties we were having, and all of a sudden, he found a site that belonged to the city and was already zoned for a cemetery.”

After raising more than $250,000 in donations, the Quebec City Islamic Cultural Centre signed a purchase agreement with the city in 2019.

The cemetery opened in June 2020, and since then, 16 Muslims have been buried there.

For Benabdallah, the establishment of the Quebec City cemetery is a sign of progress.

“When someone decides they want to be buried here and puts it in their will, it’s a sign of integration,

“It’s a sign to the family, to the children [that] this is somewhere we can live.”

As he pondered the fifth anniversary of the mosque attack, Benabdallah said he thinks of the lives that were lost, the people who were hurt — and the fact he and his friends were targeted because of their religion.

“We have that obligation to commemorate and remember those moments, to remember our brothers and those who were injured,

“The cries of hate haven’t disappeared. Islamophobia persists … but these things, we can change.”

( Photo credit : Hadi Hassin / Radio-Canada )


“Sur les lieux, près de l’autoroute à Sainte-Foy, Boufeldja Benabdallah fait une prière devant les modestes tombes couvertes de neige, marquées de numéros gravés sur de petites plaques vertes.

“Le cimetière musulman de Québec a ouvert ses portes, sans bruit.

“Sa construction a pourtant été l’objet de divisions, notamment à la suite de l’attentat de la mosquée de Québec.” — La Converse

Cinq ans après les attentats à la grande mosquée de Québec, c’est loin des projecteurs que les Québécois de confession musulmane de la Vieille Capitale ont finalement pu obtenir leur cimetière musulman.

Après plus de 22 ans d’attente, le cimetière tant espéré a ouvert le 11 juin 2020.

« Toute la communauté musulmane de Québec sait que le cimetière existe, et toute la ville de Québec le sait aussi. Ce qu’on a évité, c’est la presse – parce qu’un cimetière, ça ne se publicise pas comme ça, c’est dans la simplicité que ça se fait », nous confie Boufeldja Benabdallah, Président du Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec (CCIQ) et cofondateur du cimetière.

( Video credit : La Converse )


La fille de Azzedine Soufiane pose sa tête sur le cercueil de son père lors des funérailles des victimes de l’attentat de la Mosquée Québec.

Front page of Québec City’s Le Soleil newspaper, Saturday February 4 2017.

( Photo credit : Andy Riga )


Azzedine Soufiane was buried in Sidi Messaouad cemetery in Casablanca, Morocco, Sunday February 5 2017.

( Photo credit : CCME )


Burial of Professor Khaled Belkacemi on Sunday February 5 2017 in El Harrach, a suburb of Algiers, Algeria.

The Capital City of Canada’s second largest province, Quebec, had no Muslim Cemetery in February of 2017.

Five of the six men who were murdered in Quebec City were buried overseas, their bodies were flown to Algeria, Tunisia, Guinea and Morocco.

The burial of Abdelkrim Hassane took place Saturday February 4 2017 in Staouéli, Algeria.

Ibrahima Barry was buried in Guinea.

Mamadou Tanou Barry, originally from Guinea, was buried in Laval outside of Montreal, Quebec.

All six men were dual Citizens of Canada and their respective countries of origin.

( Photo credit : Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec )


Aboubaker Thabti’s grave and original headstone near his hometown of Tatavin in southern Tunisia.

For the past four years each January 29th, his nephew Imed, has shared this image and posted his ongoing reflection on the absence of his uncle.

This year, the fifth, was no different :

اليوم و بعد خمس سنوات لا يمكن أن يمر هذا اليوم كسائر ايام السنة.. و ما أقساه من يوم .. لن يمحى من ذاكرتي .. ربما هوا التاريخ الذي غير الكثير في شخصيتي .. واقع الصدمة مزال يتغلغل داخلي ولم استطع ان استوعب تلك اللحظة التي تلقيت فيها خبر إستشهادك .. أصبحت كل جنازة أحضرها و كأنها جنازتك .. افرح لما أصابك و أحزن على ما أصابنا .. اخاف من الموت تارة لبعدنا عن الله و اتمناه لو كان مثل خاتمتك نظرا لأعمالك الصالحة .. فمن عاش على شيئ مات عليه .. فاللهم ارزقنا حسن الخاتمة .. رغم الألم الذي يعتصر قلوبنا على موتك، إلا أنّ شهادتك ستظل فخرًا وتاجًا نرتديه على رؤوسنا مدى الحياة .. أصبحت ذكرى استشهادك محطة نتزوّد بها القوة والعزم والإرادة، ونستشعر بمسؤوليتنا للسير على هذه الطريق التي نسعى لها جميعًا كبيرنا قبل صغيرنا.. لن نبكي عليك يا خالي ، لن نقول سوى نحتسبك عند الله من الشهداء والصدّيقين والأبرار ..
قال تعالى: {وَلَا تَحْسَبَنَّ الَّذِينَ قُتِلُوا فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ أَمْوَاتًا ۚ بَلْ أَحْيَاءٌ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ يُرْزَقُونَ}

( Photo credit : Imed STh )


Aboubaker Thabti’s more recent and more complete headstone, by his memorial site in Benrif, Rural Nakrif, southern Tunisia.

Reading it, one understands though buried in Tunisia, Aboubaker Thabti was also Québecois.

( Photo credit : Imed STh )


Public memorial for Aboubaker Thabti in Southern Tunisia.

On Thursday April 8 2021, the Youth Club of Rural Nekrif in Benrif offered this kindest of gestures to the Thabti family.

Aboubaker Thabti’s nephew, Imed, thanking the Youth Club of Nekrif in Benrif said :

شكرا نكريف و شباب نكريف .. .. هي لفته في نظركم بسيطه لكننا نراها قيمه كبيره .. ادخلتم فرحه على قلوب عائلته و قلب زوجته خاصه .. رغم قساوة الوضع و الظروف .. اثبتم ان في تلك الربوع شباب واعي و مبدع ..
كل عبارت الشكر ل نادي الشباب الريفي بنكريف على هذه البادره الطيبه .. شكرا صفحة نكريف الحدث و صفحة Nekrif نكريف .. شكرا Fortas Omar و كل المشرفين على النادي و كل من ساهم من قريب او بعيد ..
رحم الله الشهيد و رزقنا الله حسن الخاتمه ..
ياراحلينَ عن الحياة أسألُكُمْ هلِ الرحيلُ عن الحياة أحياكُمْ ؟
هذي الديارُ بها أرواحُكمْ بقيَتْ .. ما جفَّ دمعيَ مُنذْ أن فارقتمُ بَصَري .. أبعد الموتِ ألقاكُمْ ام على النوافذِ بعضٌ مِنْ طُيـوفِكُمُ
وفي المرايا سَرابٌ مِنْ بَقاياكم ..

( Photo credit : Imed STh )


A public commemoration was held on the second anniversary, Tuesday night, January 29 2019.

Mohamed Thabti, then 12-years-old, remembers his dad Aboubaker as someone who was always ready to help :

“It’s important to never forget the person you loved and who loved you.

“I think it was a good initiative for the whole community to bring people together without the aspect of religion or culture and just to be with other people in peace.” — Mohamed Thabti

The second commemoration was held inside the atrium of Pavillon Desjardins at Université Laval à Québec.

( Photo credit : Spencer Lynne )


Josée Bélanger didn’t get much sleep that Sunday night.

The public school where she worked was about 200 metres away from the mosque.

She was the contact person at the school in case of an emergency and her phone began buzzing on January 29 2017, a few minutes after 7:45 p.m.

At first she ignored the notifications, but as they kept coming, she realized something was wrong.

The longtime Quebec City resident didn’t have much time to process her shock.

She called the headmaster and coordinated with teachers and staff sending her worried texts, emails and Facebook messages.

Together, they decided that the school would stay open the next day.

Still unclear was the extent of the attack.

“It was clear the school would not be closed.

“We thought we’d put into place ways to reassure parents and children and the message we wanted to convey to them on this day was that if we didn’t feel safe ourselves, we wouldn’t be coming to school.” — Josée Bélanger

School staff were told to act as normally as possible.

Children would use the playground as usual, but with additional supervision.

They were able to confirm that none of their students’ parents had been killed, although two of the victims were Arabic and taught religion at the mosque to a number of their older students.

Some of the children’s parents had also been witnesses to the massacre.

The shooter had been arrested and access to parts of the Ste-Foy neighbourhood near the mosque were still restricted.

Tactical teams were surveilling the streets, and children and parents coming to school were escorted by police.

About 200 students attend Notre-Dame-de-Foy and 81 per cent of them have immigrant parents.

Forty per cent of the kids are Muslim.

Thirty-five students stayed home because they were from families who were close to the victims, or because their parents were worried for their safety.

When classes started, teachers asked children if they had noticed or heard unusual things.

“The youngest had noticed the men wearing black clothes with machine guns, the emergency vehicles that were parked everywhere in our street, and the sirens we were hearing frequently.” — Josée Bélanger

Others were more distressed.

Some lived in apartment buildings behind the mosque and had heard the gunshots.

Visibly shaken students received counselling in a carpeted room with soft lighting at a crisis centre that Bélanger oversaw.

She was worried by what she heard :

“Are we going to die?”

“Could he come back to school?”

“Are we going to be attacked?”

“What is going to happen if someone gets in our school?”

Were among questions children asked.

“All these questions were not necessarily asked to parents, but children felt comfortable asking them to us.” — Josée Bélanger

A second crisis centre was added to comfort students and their parents who were in even more distress.

Parents were more affected, since they understood the true horror of what happened.

“There were parents that we took in our arms.

“We had to receive their worries, their tears, their distress, their sadness.” — Josée Bélanger

Some parents had to be convinced to let their children go back to school after several days of absence.

“A woman told me she’d heard gunshots and she said to me, ‘I fled my country because that’s what I heard on the streets back home, and now, I’m in Quebec and I’m hearing the sounds I used to hear.’” — Josée Bélanger

Monday evening, January 30 2017, many students and school staff were among the thousands and thousands of Quebec City residents who attended the candlelight vigil outside the Ste-Foy church.

“Parents who saw us walk, saw us being there, told us it had felt good to see us there, to feel that we were with them.” — Josée Bélanger

At the Notre-Dame-de-Foy school, there was a desire to do more as well.

The day after the vigil — two days after the tragic attack — Bélanger and the staff worked to reassure and foster a positive environment for their students.

“We wanted children to be involved in this solidarity movement to say ‘We are strong, we stick together.

“Even if we are not all Quebecers and even if we have different religions here, we want to show we want to move forward anyway.’” — Josée Bélanger

Children made stars out of paper and wrote encouraging words for their community inside.

Children then stuck them on the snow by the entrance of the school, where some parents had already left candles and pictures.

This touching memorial remained outside the school for a week.

When the stars were brought inside, they were placed in a box where children could add new pictures and messages, along with questions or calls for help.

Islam allows three days of mourning.

After the 40 days of mourning — observed in some Muslim cultural traditions — students and teachers gathered the 200 stars and took them to the mosque to give to its Imam.

The 200 Stars remained on display inside the Mosque’s main prayer hall for several months.

When Ramadan 2017 came around at the end of spring, some of the Muslim children were worried that “people with bad intentions” might “hurt them” again, said Bélanger.

But the school staff continued to reassure them and the children gradually returned to their routines.

( Photo credit : Maxime Corneau / Radio-Canada )


Kenza Elazzouzi, a Ste-Foy resident and co-organizer of the commemorations for the January 29 2017 terrorist attack, stands at a corner on January 18 2018, near the mosque where police stopped her on the night of the shooting.

On the night of the shooting, Kenza Elazzouzi couldn’t sleep.

Not that night, nor for many nights to follow.

She constantly comforted her friends: some had witnessed the attack and others had lost a relative.

Some couldn’t grapple with what had happened.

She, too, had trouble understanding.

She had lived in Quebec City for 35 years and never imagined such violence was possible.

“I was really really upset.

“I wasn’t able to go to work.

“I wasn’t able to do so many things.” — Kenza Elazzouzi

She focused on community.

“I was with the families… I became like a support, I became strong for my friends.

“Nothing else was important anymore, not work, not anything else.

“We had to gather, to be in solidarity, and to support each other mutually.” — Kenza Elazzouzi

Since the first vigil on Monday January 30 2017, where Kenza Elazzouzi took the microphone and led speeches, she has remained active in the fight against hatred in Quebec City, which she saw as a haven of tolerance before the shooting.

In the months leading up to January 29 2018, she worked with a dozen people from different backgrounds, jobs, and religions who form a group called Commémoration Citoyenne to organize ceremonies for the one-year anniversary.

“We need to be in solidarity, to create a space where people can mourn, can bring support to family, denounce this crime which is unacceptable and be in solidarity as much with Muslim family, as with their relatives and the neighbourhood.” — Kenza Elazzouzi

( Photo credit : Clothilde Goujard )


Kenza Elazzouzi was driving to her friends’ place in the quiet neighbourhood of Ste-Foy in Quebec City on Sunday night, January 29 2017.

She heard sirens, but quickly dismissed them, assuming they signalled an accident somewhere else.

When she arrived at an intersection about 50 metres from the local mosque, police officers had blocked the road.

They stopped her and aimed guns at her car window.

Minutes later, she learned of the carnage: a gunman had run into the mosque, killed six worshippers and wounded more than a dozen others.

“They were running everywhere, it was strange.” — Kenza Elazzouzi

She parked on the side of the road, where she saw the teenage son of a close friend crying.

“I took him in my arms and he was yelling, ‘My dad, my dad, my dad.’” — Kenza Elazzouzi

The teenager was the son of Azzedine Soufiane.

( Diptych photographs : Alice Chiche ; Annie T. Roussel )


Des milliers de personnes se sont rassemblées lundi soir 30 janvier 2017 à Québec à la vigile de solidarité en hommage aux victimes de l’attentat dans la mosquée de Sainte-Foy.

Sébastien Bouchard, was one of the organizers of the candlelight vigil outside the Ste-Foy church on Monday night January 30 2017.

As the start time approached, the person who was supposed to lead the speeches was stuck in traffic.

So Sébastien Bouchard asked his friend Kenza Elazzouzi to do it.

She did not hesitate.

“I needed to do something, to be involved and to give.” — Kenza Elazzouzi

( Triptych photographs : Simon Clark )


Manon Labrecque, neighbour to Mamadou Tanou Barry and Ibrahima Barry, with a memorial she erected in the lobby of the apartment building where the men lived in Quebec City, Thursday February 2 2017, a day before the funeral of the two men.

Manon Labrecque stops mopping the lobby of her apartment building long enough to show a reporter the memorial she’s erected near the entrance for her neighbours, Mamadou Tanou Barry and Ibrahima Barry, both killed in the Quebec City mosque shooting.

Labrecque explains she is trying to keep the lobby clean and beautiful out of respect for the victims’ families and their many visitors, who have come from as far as the United States to lend a helping hand ahead of Friday’s funeral.

She has spread a white cloth on a small table, and decorated it with cards and fresh flowers.

“I did it naturally, without thinking, instantly — an act of heart, an act of love to show them we’re with them.

“They’re my neighbours and I love them.” — Manon Labrecque

Mamadou Tanou Barry, a father of three, worked as an accountant for Lucas Meyer Cosmetic.

Ibrahima Barry, a father of four, was an employee at Revenue Quebec.

“There are no words to describe the sadness in those homes.

“I can’t tell you how sad it is.

“The mothers don’t know what to say to their children.

“The families, they’re living in complete incomprehension.” — Manon Labrecque

Labrecque said not only does she have close personal ties with the Barrys, but she also knew Azzedine Soufiane very well from him being a witness at her wedding, and Aboubaker Thabti, whose son is best friends with her son.

Laurent Nzabonimpa, who lives one floor down from the Soufianes, said he can’t begin to wrap his head around what happened.

Nzabonimpa said if he ever struggled carrying his grocery bags, Azzedine Soufiane was the first one out to help him.

“It’s really a big shock.

“I saw Azzedine just before he left for the mosque that night.

“He told me ‘Have a good night’ and waved with his hand, just like this, smiling, he was always smiling.” — Laurent Nzabonimpa

( Diptych photographs : Phil Carpenter / Montreal Gazette )


« A mon ami Azzedine. Je ne t’ai jamais oublié. Repose au paix » — Nicolas Lemieux

“In the days following the shooting at the Sainte-Foy mosque on January 29 2017, customers left flowers and messages on the front steps of the Assalam grocery store in honour of its owner.” — Julia Page

( Photo credit : Julia Page / CBC )


« Le deuil est immense en raison de la mort d’Azzedine Soufiane propriétaire de cette épicerie et très connu de la communauté musulmane. » — Cathy Senay, 10h00 Lundi 30 janvier 2017

The 14-year-old daughter of Azzeddine Soufiane stood at the front of a courtroom filled with familiar, supportive faces on Thursday April 19 2018.

Her back was to the man who shot and killed her father more than a year before.

Soufiane’s eldest daughter was the final witness to speak on behalf of the victims of the Quebec City mosque shooting, as the Crown prosecutor wrapped up sentencing arguments.

Heartbreak and tears again in the courtroom as a teenage girl cried softly about how much she misses her dad.

In the aftermath of her father’s death, her mother had to sell the beloved grocery store they ran together.

“The store was our whole world. But there were too many memories,” the 14-year-old said.

The teen recalled the last evening she spent with her father, the night he was killed.

She said before heading out to close up his halal grocery store, Soufiane sat down with her to talk about her future and what studies she wanted to pursue.

“We didn’t even have time to finish our conversation,” she said, crying.

Before leaving for the shop, called Assalam, which means “peace” in Arabic, Azzedinne Soufiane hugged his daughter.

Then he turned to her younger sister, who was six at the time.

“Bye bye, ma princesse,” he said.

Speaking on behalf of her entire family, the teen explained how her 16-year-old brother has been struggling to cope with the loss of his father, “the only other man in the house.”

She said she is also saddened that her sister, aged six at the time, had to lose him at such a young age — robbed of the chance of receiving his advice, as she had.

“He was the best father ever. He helped everyone. He was generous.”

That’s how so many had described Azzeddine Soufiane countless times over the previous 15 months.

Several witnesses recounted how in his last moments, he tried his best to help others one last time, charging toward the shooter in an effort to disarm him.

“I am proud. Proud of my father, of his action,” his daughter declared, asking why he deserved to die in such a manner.

She was 13 then.

“It was like any other night,” except she and her dad were in deep conversation about her future.

He left to close the grocery store he and his wife Najat had called “Assalam,” for peace.

“We never got to finish our conversation.

“What did he do to deserve this?

“What could push someone to attack innocent people?

“I miss him so much.

“He was the best father.”

Justice Huot called for a short break after Soufiane’s testimony, but not before turning to her with a strong message.

“I did not have the privilege of knowing your father,

“But it is important for you to know that your father, as he proved by his actions, was an exceptional man.”

“Your father belonged in the league of giants.

“He was a hero, and you can be proud of this for the rest of your life.” — Quebec Superior Court Justice François Huot

Huot said her testimony made it clear she carried some of Azzeddine Soufiane’s strength.

( Photo credit : Cathy Senay )


Thursday April 19 2018 :

The 14-year-old daughter of Azzeddine Soufiane stood at the front of a courtroom filled with familiar, supportive faces.

Her back was to the man who shot and killed her father more than a year before.

Soufiane’s eldest daughter was the final witness to speak on behalf of the victims of the Quebec City mosque shooting, as the Crown prosecutor wrapped up sentencing arguments.

The teenager said it took her several days to comprehend that the man she always turned to with her questions was truly dead.

It wasn’t until she saw his casket being brought into the Quebec City convention centre at a public service for Azzeddine Soufiane and two other victims, Ibrahima Barry and Mamadou Tanou Barry, that she realized it wasn’t a dream.

“That’s when it became real.”

Vendredi 3 février 2017 :

La fille de Azzedine Soufiane pose sa tête sur le cercueil de son père lors des funérailles des victimes de l’attentat de la Mosquée Québec.

( Photograph : Photos islamiques )


21h18 Dimanche 29 janvier 2017 : “Important déploiement à la tête du pont de l’île d’Orléans. Serait en lien avec la fusillade au Centre culturel islamique.” — Guillaume Dumas

“L’enquête semble se concentrer à l’entrée du pont de l’île d’Orléans. C’est là que le GTI est intervenue pour arrestation.” — Nicolas Saillant

“Voici le véhicule qui pourrait être celui utilisé par le suspect près de l’île.” — Nicolas Saillant

Thursday January 26 2017 : Around Isha prayer time, a 27-year-old man, who lives in the neighbourhood, visits the Mosque in Sainte-Foy and speaks with Lhoussine El Manoug.

Thinking the young man wanted to know more about Islam, El Manoug continued to speak to him :

“I was trying to explain to him that Allah, it’s the same God as the Jews and the Christians.”

At that moment Azzedine Soufiane, said to El Manoug on his way out the door, “This guy is not interested.”

The man also asks El Manoug for money supposedly for a bus ticket to Montréal.

Their conversation lasted less than five minutes.

Friday January 27 2017 : the 45th President of the United States signed a flurry of executive orders that played to his racist base, including tightening border security with Mexico and his infamous Muslim travel ban, which prohibited most travellers from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Sudan, Yemen and Somalia from entering the United States.

Saturday January 28 2017 : the 23rd Prime Minister of Canada, tweeted:

“To those fleeing persecution, terror & war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength #WelcomeToCanada.”

That weekend, the 27-year-old man in Quebec City scrolled through the hashtag #muslimban.

Sunday January 29 2017 at 5:28 p.m. : he looked at Prime Minister Trudeau’s widely shared tweet.

Thirty minutes later, he was looking at the website of the Islamic Cultural Centre, the mosque in the same suburb near his home in Ste-Foy, and which he had entered three days earlier.

He drove to his parents’ house, had supper with them and then told them he was going to a gun range.

He lied.

He lied to his parents.

Sometime after 7 p.m. : the shooter’s cellphone rang. It was his father, telling him the gun range was closed. The shooter replied that he was going to make a stop at the grocery store instead.

“Why don’t you come home right now?” his father asked.

7:53 p.m. : the man who had been eager to commit mass murder for all of his adult life, arrived at the mosque right after the Isha prayer service.

7:53 p.m. : worshippers begin to leave after evening prayers. The shooter finds Ibrahima Barry and Mamadou Tanou Barry by the entrance. They are his first victims.

He then entered the building.

Within two minutes and fifty-nine seconds he will have murdered Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Abdelkrim Hassane and Azzedine Soufiane. The shooter killer injures 19 others.

Inside, three small children are playing near a wall.

As chaos breaks out, a man in a red coat gathers the children and rushes them to a small anteroom.

One disoriented child in a brightly coloured coat wanders around the room as bullets fly before being dragged to safety.

None of the children were injured.

In the anteroom where several have sought shelter, Azzeddine Soufiane eyes Dr. Merouane Rachidi, as they saw the shooter come into the main prayer room of the mosque.

Soufiane tells Rachidi : “It is just a single person, we shouldn’t be afraid.”

Azzeddine Soufiane decides: It was time to rush the shooter.

Azzeddine Soufiane bolted across the room, driving the killer into a shoe rack, lunging at the shooter, and nearly forcing him to drop his gun.

The shooter fights him off, pushes him back and shoots him.

He shoots Azzeddine Soufiane again while he lies on the ground.

The shooter reloads and shoots Azzeddine Soufiane some more.

Azzeddine Soufiane is mortally wounded.

The shooter retreated into the lobby a second time, reloading his weapon and returning to the prayer room in four seconds.

7:55 p.m. : the shooter re-enters the prayer room. He would fire 30 rounds in 30 seconds during the second spree and would particularly target people attempting to take cover near the mihrab and the Imam’s office. He calmly shot at people hiding in the mihrab….

The shooter then shot the Imam, Nizar Ghali, in the back.

He shot Saïd Akjour in the left shoulder as he hid in the mihrab.

Aymen Derbali was among the men who intentionally drew fire from the killer.

Aymen Derbali arriving late for prayer, entered the mosque right behind the gunman.

He didn’t see the two bodies that were lying by the entrance; he had gone further down the corridor to take off his shoes and go into the prayer room.

People in the prayer room looked worried and that’s when he realized there was a man in a white t-shirt holding a weapon on his left.

It was the same man who had entered the mosque just ahead of him.

Derbali’s brain was racing: he was still near the corridor and could hide in the bathroom, or he could stay and attract the man’s attention to stop him from shooting into the crowd of people in front of him.

He chose the second option.

“I started looking up and down, giving the impression I was going to run toward him.

“When he saw me, he saw that my gestures were weird so he kept looking my direction.” — Aymen Derbali

The killer/shooter fired at him several times until his weapon jammed.

7:56 p.m. : the killer finally exits the main entrance and flees the scene, leaving his semi-automatic rifle and guitar case behind.

Saïd Akjour, who had been shot in the shoulder, chases after the killer.

7:56 p.m. : seconds later, Police received several calls from the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec reporting that shots had been fired.

Like the victims, Mohamed Belkhadir was at the mosque for Isha prayer.

He had left the building and was clearing snow off the stairs outside when he heard the gunshots.

His instinct was to hide.

When the noises stopped, he called 911 and then went inside the mosque to see if anyone was still alive.

“I found someone near the door, I didn’t know if he was dead or not.

“I saw another person who was breathing, and I gave him my coat.” — Mohamed Belkhadir

8:10 p.m. : the killer calls 911, confesses to being the shooter at the mosque. He then asks to speak with investigators.

He tells police he will surrender to officers at an access road near the Île d’Orléans bridge.

The killer, now awaiting arrest, still has an unknown number of weapons inside his car.

The 911 dispatcher keeps the killer on the line, talking to him for fifty minutes, ensuring he does not disconnect the call.

Police will need that fifty minutes to triangulate the killer’s exact location.

A large security perimeter is established at the entrance to the Île-d’Orléans bridge.

After 9:00 p.m. : Tactical Intervention Group arrest the killer found sitting inside a gray Mitsubishi vehicle.

Inside the mosque, police would find 28 rounds still in the rifle that he left behind, with one jammed bullet, and would recover 48 9 mm casings from the killer’s Glock.

Monday January 30 2017 approximately 5 p.m. : court documents indicate that the 27-year-old man faces six counts of first degree murder and five counts of attempted murder with a restricted weapon in connection with mosque shooting.

Wednesday September 20 2017 : The shooter’s liason officer files a report stating the shooter regrets not shooting more people.

Monday October 2 2017 : The Crown is granted permission to proceed directly to trial without a preliminary inquiry.

They also add a sixth charge of attempted murder with a restricted weapon.

The Crown explains the new charge involves people, including four children, who were in close proximity when the attack occurred.

The Crown also announces there won’t be any terrorism-related charges.

Monday March 26 2018 : The killer enters not guilty pleas for 12 charges, including six of first-degree murder and six of attempted murder.

That afternoon, the killer wants to change his pleas to guilty but the judge does not accept them without a psychiatric assessment.

Wednesday March 28 2018 : The judge accepts the guilty pleas and people burst out sobbing in the courtroom.

The man, now a convicted killer, is currently serving a life sentence.

He should not have lied to his parents.

( Diptych photographs : Guillaume Dumas ; Nicolas Saillant )


Wednesday February 1 2017.

CCIQ has been closed to prayers since Sunday night.

It is pre-dawn and the time for first prayer of the day, Fajr, is approaching.

A slightly unprepared Radio-Canada reporter and his startled cameraman are present when Mohamed Khediri approaches to unlock the front doors…

Dévasté par le drame qui secoue sa communauté, Mohamed Khediri ouvre les portes de la mosquée aux fidèles chaque jour, depuis 30 ans.

Revenir sur les lieux du drame suscite une vive émotion pour lui après la perte de proches et amis.

« Comment ça se fait que ça se passe à Québec »,

« Moi, ça fait 35 ans que je suis ici. Et à la mosquée, on vient pour avoir la paix. »

M. Khediri ne s’en cache pas, il aura besoin d’aide pour traverser cette terrible épreuve.

« Ils m’ont dit à l’hôpital que je pouvais avoir de l’aide et je pense que je vais y aller. J’en ai besoin. Je suis poigné ici », dit-il en montrant son coeur.

Azzeddine Soufiane, qui compte parmi les six victimes, était son épicier, son ami proche.

« C’est dur », dit M. Khediri en pleurs.

Devastated by the tragedy that has shaken his community, Mohamed Khediri has opened the doors of the mosque to the faithful every day for 30 years.

Returning to the scene of the tragedy arouses great emotion for him after the loss of relatives and friends.

“How is it happening in Quebec ?

“I’ve been here for 35 years. And at the mosque, we come to have peace.”

Mr. Khediri does not hide it, he will need help to get through this terrible ordeal.

“They told me at the hospital that I could get help and I think I will go. I need it. I’m gripped here,” he said, pointing to his heart.

Azzeddine Soufiane, who is one of the six victims, was his grocer, his close friend.

“It’s hard,” said Mr. Khediri in tears.

( Photo : Radio Canada )


This is a black and white photograph. If it was in colour, you would see a blood stained carpet. Every time I looked at it in colour, I would cry… So I made it black and white, so you won’t.

Muslims in Quebec City wanted the mosque to reopen as soon as possible, just days after a shooter killed the six men and wounded several others.

Wednesday Morning, February 1 2017, with intentions of transparency, CCIQ reopened to Canadian media so they could witness, document, record, and report the aftermath.

Ahmed Elrefai, a worshipper at CCIQ, speaking to reporters pointed to several spots of blood across the room and said that was where his friends were hit.

“Someone was shot under the mic,” he said, pointing to a dried pool of blood near a prayer carpet at the front of the room.

Elrefai told reporters despite the stains and bullet holes in the windows and walls, three men returned to the mosque Wednesday morning [February 1 2017] to kneel for Salat Al Fajr, The Morning Prayer between Dawn and Sunrise.

“The message is that we will still pray, even with blood on the floor.” — Ahmed Elrefai

( Photo Credit : HïMY SYeD )


Dimanche 29 janvier 2017, un terrible attentat a eu lieu dans la grande mosquée du Québec située dans le quartier Sainte-Foy.

Parmi les deux blessés qui luttaient contre la vie et la mort, il y avait l’imam Nizar Ghalib, âgé de 38 ans.

Dans l’attente de son retour, les fidèles se relayaient pour la tenue de la prière.

A la grande joie des fidèles, Mercredi 1 Mars 2017, l’imam Nizar Ghali est de retour pour diriger les Isha prières.

L’imam a su surmonter ses traumatismes physiques et moraux pour assurer ses responsabilités religieuses.

Nizar Ghali, l’imam qui avait été grièvement blessé lors de l’attentat terroriste contre la grande mosquée de Québec, est de retour parmi les fidèles pour diriger les Isha salâts el hamdoulilah !

Dans la vidéo suivante, on peut voir l’imam diriger la prière debout et en bonne santé el hamdoulilah.

Le geste du terroriste était rempli de haine et d’islamophobie mais il n’a pas réussi à briser la force de notre communauté.

On Sunday January 29 2017, Imam Nizar Ghali had led the Isha prayer inside the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec.

He was shot during the attack.

He survived.

As did his 2 year old daughter who began crawling to her father after he was shot that night.

She was saved by Hakim Chambaz who scooped her up and shielded her from the killer by hiding her behind a pillar.

Imam Nizar Ghali was seriously injured after being shot and remained in hospital for some time.

On Wednesday March 1 2017, Imam Nizar Ghali returned to the Prayer Hall.

He returned to the same prayer mat, stood in the same position, in front of the same congregation, to lead the same prayer, Salat Al Isha, The Night Prayer.

Listen carefully several seconds into the video, we hear a child’s voice echoing within the prayer hall.

Correction : It was not the same congregation. Six of its members were… absent.

( Video credit : al Nas )


“…This green square in the carpet towards the front of the main prayer hall.

“It was a spot where blood stains could not be removed no matter how hard they tried to clean it.

“So they cut a perfect square out and replaced it with brand new carpet.

“The memories of that day remain no matter what…no one needed the added reminder of seeing the stains while they stood to pray.” — Dr. Fariha Khan

“…I prayed two rakats for the 6 men who were killed by hate that day and for this to never happen again.” — Dr. Fariha Khan

Grande Mosquée De Québec ~ CCIQ ~ Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec

( Photo credit : Dr. Fariha Khan )


“Five years since the Quebec City mosque shooting.

“I was in the mosque in the hours after the shooting and felt a gut punch when I realized these winter boots, lined up next to the entrance, were left behind by the victims.” — Kate McKenna

“I had the same gut punch reaction, and have the same photo. It’s seared in my mind.” — Wendy Gillis

“I remember thinking the same thing about the cars that were left in the parking lot when I was there the next day.” — Robyn Flynn

“This picture always feels like a kick in the gut. Instant sadness. I can’t even begin to explain.” — Sidra

“This is the photo I can’t forget.

“All the people who never came back for their shoes – and by extension, their families, friends and lives. Allah yerhamhum ya Rabb 🥺💔” — Sarah Mushtaq

“This bears contemplation.

“Look around you now at those who are suffering more than you are and listen to them. Help them.

“If hate is not directed at you count yourself lucky and do something good for others.” — Renee Blanchette

“Still a heartbreaking photo five years later.” — Jessica Kowbel

“I saw a photo once of the aftermath of Christchurch.

“The survivors had rushed outside without their shoes, standing in shock barefoot.

“I thought of all the times I’d gone to my mosque and taken off my shoes and it made me wonder if at some point I wouldn’t be putting them back on.” — Selma Tobah

“Douloureusement symbolique. ⚘🟩🤲” — Marie-Eve paquet

“Was watching a news report on remembering Quebec Mosque victims.

“Realized my 11 year old was around.

“He asked:

“Is there a shooting?”

“I said it was 5 years ago & I hope that reassured him.

“He’d been trying to get over the fear over the June killing of a Muslim family in his city London, Ontario” — Sara Khorshid

( Photo credit : Kate McKenna )


The Islamic Cultural Centre of Québec (CCIQ) keeps, to this day, a few pairs of shoes belonging to the deceased victims in the uppermost shelves located by the entrance to the prayer hall.

( Photo credit : SaphirNews )


Theo Moudakis drew this Editorial Cartoon.

On Monday evening January 30 2017, Theo published it online.

Next morning, it appeared in the Tuesday January 31 2017 print edition of The Toronto Star.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Theo Moudakis )


( Editorial Cartoonist : André-Philippe Côté / Le Soleil )


“Pray for Quebec… 💚🙏🏻💛” — Katerine Hamel

Québec City Skyline, Tuesday evening, January 31 2017

( Photograph : Katerine Hamel )


31 janvier 2017 : Bonhomme avec la larme à l’oeil sur fond de palais de glace. Le concept circule en plusieurs versions sur Facebook et Twitter.

« Je trouvais l’image intéressante.

» Je trouvais que ça rassemblait la joie du Carnaval avec la tristesse des évènements [à la mosquée de Sainte-Foy].» — Michel Bédard, metteur en ondes à CKIA, en a fait sa photo de profil

« Bonhomme est un symbole de la Ville de Québec, tout comme le château Frontenac qui est reflété dans quelques images d’ailleurs.

» C’est normal que les gens utilisent ces symboles-là pour exprimer leur peine et leur désarroi.

» On en est conscient, on trouve ça logique. » — Mélanie Raymond, directrice générale du Carnaval de Québec

( Photograph : Le Soleil )


Montreal Gazette, Tuesday January 31 2017.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Aislin / Montreal Gazette )


« Le Polyscope, journal étudiant de Polytechnique Montréal, publiait ce dessin en hommage aux victimes de l’attentat survenu le 29 janvier 2017 à la grande mosquée de Québec.

» Le Bonhomme Carnaval est emblématique de la ville de Québec. » — Paul

( Image credit : Paul / Le Polyscope )


« Ma fille de 5 ans a vu ce dessin par-dessus mon épaule et j’ai dû lui expliquer pourquoi le Bonhomme Carnaval était triste… 😔 » — Serge Quinty

“My husband & I had to explain to our 5 year old daughter why the Quebec City Carnivale snowman was sad.” — Elisia Saam-Quinty

( Artist : Jean Faucher )


Le Soleil, 31 janvier 2017.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Fleg Christian Daigle )


“Dad, who are the people with the boo-boos? Do you know them?”

“Yes … It’s us …”

( Editorial Cartoonist : Pascal / Le Devoir )


31 janvier 2017 : Caricature du Le Quotidien sur la fusillade de Québec, un Samuel de Champlain attristé.

( Editorial Cartoon : Le Quotidien )


“Six Muslim-Canadians shot while praying in mosque. Another senseless act of terror.” — David Howell, Winnipeg, Manitoba

( Editorial Cartoonist : David Howell / Toonstalk World )


The Hamilton Spectator, Tuesday January 31 2017.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Graeme MacKay )


“My 8-year-old had his first real run-in with Islamophobia this week.

“And it’s been a reminder for me of how much work there is to yet to do…but also how far we have come.

“He told me a few kids were talking at lunch about which holidays they celebrate, and when my son shared his, a boy yelled out “I hate Muslims.”

“Everyone was shocked, and as he (and a friend) went to tell the teacher the bell rang for recess and everyone was ushered outside.

“But that night after listening to a conversation I was having with my husband, my son quietly interrupted us:

“Someone was racist to me today.” and went on to tell us the story.

“I asked him how he felt and he said: “It made me really sad.”

“I was unsure of what to do next.

“It’s one thing when you deal with anti-Muslim hate, but it’s hard when you see your (very innocent) kid going through it.

“So I decided to reach out to his teacher.

“She responded immediately and said she would address it.

“The school’s VP dealt with it swiftly and thoroughly.

“She talked to both kids.

“Stressed it was unacceptable and would not be tolerated.

“My son got an apology from his classmate to which the VP told him:

“Don’t’ say it’s okay. Because it’s not. But say, apology accepted.”

“I asked my son how he’s feeling now and he said, “I’m glad we talked about it and the VP said it’s unacceptable. Cause it is.”

“I’m happy the school took it seriously, and didn’t just brush it under the rug. I know that doesn’t happen all the time. But it gives me hope.

“It’s not lost on me that this weekend marks 5-years since the Quebec City mosque attack. And since then, Canadian Muslims continue to face racism, discrimination and hate.

“I’m not naïve, but I am hopeful that we can combat hate, one student, one conversation at a time. InshAllah.” — Noor Javed, Toronto, Ontario

( Photo : Noor Javed )


“Hey everyone.

“This week, many of you will be seeing me on work Zoom calls and other functions wearing this green square🟩.

“The green square is meant to commemorate the murder of six men four years ago, January 29, at the Quebec City Mosque.

“Those men were in prayer and they left behind families and loved ones and really an imprint on our entire country.

“I remember that day very tragically.

“It affected me and my family in a big way.

“I get that there are lots of tragedies in the world.

“They’re all important.

“They all ought to be commemorated.

“This one is mine.

“So look, this week, if you’re able to join me in wearing a green square, I know that would be appreciated greatly by the families.

“If you’re not able, for whatever reason, I ask that you kindly take a moment to reflect on how you can help eliminate, eradicate all forms of hate in Canada, including Islamophobia.

“Look forward to speaking to everyone very soon.” — Walied Soliman, Toronto, Ontario

( Photo : Walied Soliman )


Your Typical Couple, Mahdi & Sagal

Sagal :

“This January 29, Canada as a Country will mark the federally designated National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.”

Mahdi :

“Five years ago, a terrorist attack happened in the Quebec City Mosque.

“A gunman opened fire on worshippers in this place of worship, this place of Peace, and he killed six people, May Allah have Mercy on them, and he injured many.”

Sagal :

“The Green Square we are both wearing symbolizes the green carpet in the Quebec City Mosque where the victims last stood to pray.

“I am wearing a green symbol today to remember the victims and survivors of the Quebec City Mosque Attack, and as a commitment to stand against Islamophobia in all its forms.”

Mahdi :

“I wear it because I know as a Country we can do more.”

Sagal :

“I wear it because I remain hopeful that Canada will be a safer place for people of all backgrounds.”

Mahdi :

“I invite you to wear a Green Square to stand against Islamophobia and hate, and for a better future for all of us Canadians.”

( Photo credit : Mahdi & Sagal / Your Typical Couple )


Sheridan College students and Islam Awareness Week guests show their support of the Green Square Campaign to remember the victims and survivors of the Quebec City mosque attack.

“Today, at Sheridan College, we recognize the National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“We remember Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, and Azzedine Soufiane, who lost their lives on January 29, 2017, in this act of terror.

“Sheridan will be lowering its flags at the Trafalgar and Davis campuses in commemoration of the victims and survivors of the Québec City mosque attack.

“We invite you to join us in solidarity by wearing a green square to honour the victims and survivors.

“This week we recognized Islam Awareness Week at Sheridan alongside the Sheridan Muslim Students Association; a week dedicated to solidarity and exchange so that Sheridan community members of all backgrounds and beliefs could come together to raise awareness of the issues facing members of the Muslim community.

“You can access resources, wellness supports or community guides, or to learn more about how you can be an ally to Muslim community members today and every day.” — Sheridan Student Union and Sheridan College

Sheridan College spans three Ontario campuses located in Brampton, Mississauga, Oakville.

( Collage credit : Sheridan Student Union / Sheridan College )


Friday October 20 2017 : Inauguration Ceremony outside CCIQ held after Jumah Prayer. The U.S. Consulate donated tree and plaque for victims of January 2017 attacks in Quebec City.

U.S. Consul General Allison Areias Vogel originally tried to bring flowers in the hours following the shooting but was unable to get near the mosque, which was cordoned off by police.

“So I thought rather than give flowers that will eventually fade, why don’t we give a tree, something that will live on in their memory.”

She said the Colorado spruce happens to be her favourite tree, and was chosen because it keeps its needles in winter.

“We wanted something that was positive.”

“It will provide shade and beauty, protection, all the things that the people who died provided for their families.

“These families are also heroes.

“They get up every morning knowing they have to continue on without their loved one.” — Allison Areias Vogel, U.S. Consul General

“Trees are witness to humanity’s history.

“This tree will live on when we are gone to tell future generations what happened here.” — Boufeldja Benabdallah

Boufeldja Benabdallah, the vice-president of Quebec City’s Cultural Islamic Centre studied forestry engineering at Laval University in the 1970s.

At the inauguration ceremony, Benabdallah said the mosque chose to plant the tree near the side entrance, steps away from where one of the victims fell.

“We planted it here out front, where there is light.

“The blue spruce can live 150 years.

“It will turn blue and reach for the sky.” — Boufeldja Benabdallah

Zahia Sais, attended Friday prayer at the mosque then stayed for the ceremony with her daughter Yasmeen.

“It’s still so difficult, nine months later.

“But seeing that people are still reaching out to show support is comforting.” — Zahia Sais

( Collage photographs : Julia Page )


Monday June 18 2018 : About 100 people gethered on the east side of Dawson Hall, McGill University, Montréal, for the unveiling of a plaque and a newly planted ironwood tree in honour of the six men who were killed in the shootings of January 29 2017, at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City in Sainte-Foy.

Amir Belkacemi, son of one of the murdered men, Université Laval Chemistry Professor Khaled Belkacemi, addressed the McGill University crowd :

“I found Father’s Day, which was yesterday, painful, but it is most important to look to the future.

“Thousands of young people come here to McGill to build their future.

“They will see this plaque and this tree.

“This tree that will outlive me is a tree of love and unity.” — Amir Belkacemi, wearing a T-shirt that read Amour, Respect, Unité

Others who spoke at the event were two survivors from the night of the shootings: Larbi Yahya and Hakim Chambaz.

( Photo credit : Neale McDevit )


Monday June 18 2018 : Principal Suzanne Fortier, along with Imam Hassan Guillet (left) and Ehab Lotayef, Eng. IT & Technical Services Manager, dedicates the new ironwood tree at McGill University to the victims of the massacre at the Centre culturel islamique de Québec.

Imam Hassan Guillet compared those who were killed to stars that help in navigating a better future.

“I would like to thank McGill staff and students for organizing this event helping us to remember and act in the names of the fallen ones.

“They will guide and help us build a better future.” — Imam Hassan Guillet

“That horrific incident shook and deeply saddened our country.

“Today as we gather around this newly planted ironwood tree, we remember the victims of this terrible act of violence and hate.

“Our assembly today is anchored to McGill’s steadfast commitment to the fundamental values of respect and inclusion.

“McGill is committed to promoting a climate of inclusiveness and tolerance which will allow all our students, faculty and staff to flourish in their pursuits.” — Suzanne Fortier, Principal and Vice Chancellor

The speakers unveiled a plaque at the foot of the young tree.

The plaque reads:

“This tree was planted by McGill University in memory of the 6 (six) Muslims slain at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City (CCIQ) on January 29, 2017.”

The McGill crest appears beneath the inscription. Bluebells were planted beside the plaque.

Along with the tree-planting, reference was made to McGill’s new Centre culturel islamique de Québec Memorial Award which will go annually to two students who show a commitment to fostering the inclusion of Muslims within the larger Québécois and Canadian societies.

“I am delighted about McGill’s new Centre culturel islamique de Québec Memorial Award.

“Much like the tree we have planted, this award encourages us to look back and remember, but also to look forward with hope.

“The McGill students who receive this award in years ahead will represent academic talent and a commitment to fostering inclusion and will thus be outstanding ambassadors for our University.” — Christopher Manfredi, Provost

( Photo credit : Neale McDevit )


Sarah Abou-Bakr est la lauréate du prix commémoratif du Centre culturel islamique de Québec de l’Université de McGill.

Elle est reconnue pour ses efforts de sensibilisation et de compréhension de l’expérience musulmane au Québec et au Canada.

Recipient Winners of the CCIQ Memorial Award

They have demonstrated a steadfast commitment to fostering the inclusion of Muslims within Quebec and Canadian Society, and within the McGill community.

2018-2019 : Lina Bensaidane, Bachelor of Civil Law/Juris Doctor

2019-2020 : Tayseer Vericain, Masters of Occupational Therapy

2020-2021 : Khadija Ahmed, Bachelor of Civil Law/Juris Doctor

2021-2022 : Sarah Abou-Bakr, Masters of Arts in Islamic Studies

“We felt that Sarah had worked audaciously to advance inclusion for awareness of Muslim students both at McGill and beyond, in a manner that deepened understanding of Muslim experiences, throughout showing tremendous energy, perseverance and intellect.” — Ehab Lotayef, CCIQ Award fundraising campaign co-chair

“My goal was for people with different backgrounds and identities to participate in exchanges with Muslims to eliminate stereotypes.

“I like to believe that laws such as Bill 21 are clear proof that there needs to be more understanding and more inclusion.

“I believe that one way to foster understanding is for our stories to be heard, and by telling mine, I am humanizing who I am, and humanizing people who look like me and share the same beliefs as me.

“That alone is an impact, because it makes people aware of the problems deeply embedded in our Canadian society that Muslims face every day because of lack of inclusion.” — Sarah Abou-Bakr

Abou-Bakr says her biggest accomplishment was leading NCCM’s 2020 and 2021 national Green Square Campaigns, which encouraged people to wear a green square to commemorate the anniversary of the Quebec City mosque shooting.

The Green Square Campaigns also raise money for the families of the victims, as well as to rebuild the CCIQ mosque, which had not been repaired since the 2017 tragedy.

( Photo credit : La Converse )


“While most of us can see how silly and hypocritical Quebec’s proposed secularism law will turn out to be — banning teachers, police officers, judges and others from wearing religious items like hijabs, turbans, kippahs, and crucifixes while at work. — it seems the party that insists on passing it still doesn’t get it.

“So let’s give it another try.” — Anthony Bonaparte, The Suburban

( Editorial Cartoonist : Napoleon Anthony Bonaparte )


“5 ( ٥ ) years ago, on January 29, 2017, the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City was subject to a tragic, hateful and Islamophobic crime.

“A gunman entered the place of worship and opened fire on the worshippers, killing 6 men and injuring many more.

“Until this day, this tragic shooting continues to shake many hearts and bring deep sadness and fear to our communities.

“January 29 is a date that Muslims in Quebec and the rest of Canada will forever mourn.

“But January 29 also represents a day of hope, a day where we can come together for a better future for Canadians of all backgrounds, for a Canada that is free from Islamophobia and hate.

“The National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia serves as a reminder of the work we must do as a nation to eradicate Islamophobia, hate and racism in Canada.

“In honour of the memory of the victims, in recognition of those who selflessly and courageously put themselves in harm’s way to protect others, and in solidarity with the survivors of this tragedy, we mark this day by inviting each and every Canadian to stand with us by joining the Green Square Campaign.

“The Green Square Campaign takes place in the week leading up to January 29th every year to remember the victims and survivors of the Quebec City mosque attack.

“The green square represents the green carpets of the Quebec City mosque, where the victims last stood to pray.

“It symbolizes the fact that the deceased are, God willing, in a  green garden, in a better place since they left us that night.

“Wear the green square in solidarity with the six widows, the seventeen children left fatherless, Aymen Derbali who is left paralyzed for life, and every single person suffering the consequences of this hateful and despicable act of violence.”

— The Green Square Campaign is an initiative powered by the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec (CCIQ), National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) and Islamic Relief Canada.

( Artist : Mansur Ali Mirani, Vancouver )


Monday February 4 2019 :

Quebec awarding « good citizenship » medals to Azzeddine Soufiane, killed in January 29 2017 mosque shooting and Aymen Derbali, who survived.

Both men tried to stop the shooter.

( Diptych photographs : Catou MacKinnon ; Catou MacKinnon )


Hommage au civisme – Actes héroïques 2017

Azzedine Soufiane (à titre posthume)

«La fusillade à la Grande Mosquée de Québec, survenue le 29 janvier 2017, a laissé plusieurs familles dans le deuil, notamment celle du regretté Azzedine Soufiane.

Pour celles et ceux qui ne le connaissent pas, Azzedine, alors âgé de 57 ans, était marié.

Il était l’heureux père de trois enfants.

C’était un épicier respecté de toute sa communauté, et plus encore!

Les clients de son commerce aimaient tous son sourire et sa bonne humeur ainsi que le plaisir qu’il prenait à leur rendre service.

Ce dimanche-là, Azzedine se rend chez lui après avoir fermé l’épicerie.

Il veut passer un moment avec sa famille avant d’aller à la mosquée pour la prière du soir.

Ainsi, à l’heure de la salât, Azzedine se rend à la mosquée.

Cependant, ce soir-là, quelques minutes après le début de la cérémonie, il entend soudain des coups de feu, qui semblent venir de l’extérieur.

Quelques instants plus tard, un tireur lourdement armé entre dans la mosquée, ouvrant le feu dans tous les sens.

Effrayés, les fidèles s’enfuient vers l’avant de la salle, où se trouve le mihrab.

Azzedine se réfugie avec eux.

Il voit alors son ami Aymen Derbali s’interposer entre le tireur et eux.

Cependant, Aymen s’effondre, ayant pris sept balles.

Instantanément, Azzedine demande aux autres fidèles de l’accompagner pour immobiliser le tireur pendant que ce dernier recharge son arme.

Personne ne trouvera la force de le suivre.

Avec témérité, Azzedine se rue alors sur le tireur et le retient, l’instant de quelques secondes, en l’empoignant par le collet.

Malheureusement, ce dernier est fort : il réussit rapidement à se libérer.

À bout portant, il tirera froidement sur Azzedine, qui succombera à ses blessures.

Bien que cet hommage ramène de douloureux souvenirs, il est important de souligner le geste empreint d’héroïsme et de profond amour de son prochain qu’a accompli Azzedine.

Il a tout tenté pour venir en aide à ses amis.

La bravoure dont il a fait preuve reste la plus belle preuve de toute la bonté qui habitait cet homme.»

( Photo credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Hommage au civisme – Actes héroïques 2017

Aymen Derbali

« Le 29 janvier 2017, vers 19 h 45, Aymen se rend à la Grande Mosquée de Québec pour la salât, ou prière.

Comme il est un peu en retard, il s’installe à l’écart de ses amis.

Quelques minutes après le début de la prière, les fidèles entendent des détonations, qui semblent venir de l’extérieur.

Soudain, un tireur lourdement armé surgit dans la mosquée, puis il ouvre le feu dans tous les sens.

Paniqués et apeurés, les fidèles s’enfuient vers l’avant de la salle.

Plusieurs personnes se réfugient alors dans le « mihrab », une petite niche aménagée dans le mur au fond de la salle de prière.

Le tireur s’approche du mihrab.

Dès qu’Aymen l’aperçoit, il n’hésite pas un instant : il bondit sur lui pour le désarmer.

À ce moment, Aymen reçoit une première balle dans la jambe gauche.

Malgré la douleur, il tente encore d’attirer l’attention du tireur, pour qu’il cesse de faire feu sur les membres de sa communauté religieuse.

Ainsi, à deux reprises, Aymen s’interpose entre l’homme armé et le mihrab.

Néanmoins, après avoir reçu sept balles en quelques secondes, Aymen tombe.

Il perd conscience quelques minutes plus tard.

Personne n’arrivera à le réveiller sur place.

À cause de l’événement tragique, Aymen passe deux mois dans le coma, deux autres mois aux soins intensifs ainsi qu’un mois et demi en service de traumatologie.

C’est seulement le 3 août 2018 qu’Aymen revient chez lui pour de bon.

Cependant, il demeurera handicapé.

Cette tragédie a enlevé la vie à six personnes.

Sans le geste héroïque d’Aymen, elle aurait pu être encore plus meurtrière.

En cette journée, nous rendons hommage à Aymen pour sa bravoure et son courage. »

( Photo credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Monday February 4 2019 :

Aymen Derbali, alongside his 10-year-old son Ayoub, was presented with a medal for bravery for ‘saving innocent lives’ by Quebec Justice Minister Sonia LeBel.

“It’s important to remember what happened.” — Ayoub Derbali

( Photo credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Monday February 4 2019 :

The Soufiane family, left to right, Iliès, Najat Naanaa, Hajar and Zineb, accepted a medal for bravery on behalf of Azzedine Soufiane, one of six men killed in the January 29 2017 attack, presented by Quebec Justice Minister Sonia Lebel, right.

The medal recipient’s nephew, Said Soufiane, said recognizing his uncle’s act of courage shows the national assembly appreciated his efforts.

“He tried to take action to avoid the massacre, but unfortunately it didn’t work out as he had hoped.” — Said Soufiane

( Photo credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Monday February 4 2019 :

The family of Azzeddine Soufiane beside Aymen Derbali, in the Red Chamber of Quebec National Assembly.

( Photo credit : Catou MacKinnon )


Monday February 4 2019 : Quebec Justice Minister Sonia Lebel presented good citizenship medals to six people, including two of the heroes of the mosque shooting, Aymen Derbali and Azzedine Soufiane.

Soufiane was one of the six men killed in the attack, but not before he tried to stop the shooter.

( Photo credit : Global News )


Canada Day Wednesday July 1 2020 :

Governor General honours ‘remarkable Canadians’

Governor General Julie Payette recognized 123 Canadians for their skills, courage or dedication to service with a decoration for bravery, a meritorious service decoration, or the volunteer medal.

The list of “remarkable Canadians” was in place of the traditional Canada Day announcement of new Order of Canada members.

The COVID-19 pandemic had prevented members of the Order of Canada advisory panel from meeting.

Among those honoured for their bravery were five people who tried to stop a gunman who opened fire inside a Quebec City mosque on January 29 2017, killing six people.

Azzedine Soufiane, who died trying to stop the attacker, was posthumously awarded the Star of Courage, the second-highest award for bravery in Canada after the Cross of Valour.

Four survivors of the attack — Said Akjour, Hakim Chambaz, Aymen Derbali and Mohamed Khabar — were among 13 people who received the Medal of Bravery.


Star of Courage

Azzedine Soufiane, S.C. (posthumous)
Québec, Quebec
Star of Courage

For sacrificing his life in an attempt to disarm the assailant during the mass shooting at the Grande Mosquée de Québec, on January 29, 2017.

Medal of Bravery

Said Akjour, M.B.
Québec, Quebec
Medal of Bravery

For attempting to confront the assailant during the mass shooting at the Grande Mosquée de Québec, on January 29, 2017.

Hakim Chambaz, M.B.
Québec, Quebec
Medal of Bravery

For rescuing a young girl during the mass shooting at the Grande Mosquée de Québec, on January 29, 2017.

Aymen Derbali, M.B.
Québec, Quebec
Medal of Bravery

For destabilizing the assailant during the mass shooting at the Grande Mosquée de Québec, on January 29, 2017.

Mohamed Khabar, M.B.
Québec, Quebec
Medal of Bravery

For attempting to confront the assailant during the mass shooting at the Grande Mosquée de Québec, on January 29, 2017.

About the Decorations for Bravery

Created in 1972 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Canadian Bravery Decorations symbolically express the nation’s gratitude to those people who defy the instinct for self-preservation and risk their lives to save or protect others.

Names of these five survivors of the Quebec Mosque Attack were the first five names appearing at the top of Governor General’s list of 123 remarkable Canadians.

Because of COVID-19 pandemic, Star of Courage and Medals of Bravery will be presented in-person at a later date.

( Image credit : Governor General of Canada )


“The Government of Canada intends to appoint a special representative on combatting Islamophobia as part of its unwavering commitment to tackle all forms of racism, hate and discrimination.” — Canadian Heritage

“In Canada, diversity is a fact but inclusion is a choice.

“The recent hate crimes fueled by Islamophobia in Canada and around the world remind us of the need to show even more boldness, strength and determination in our fight against hate.

“We have listened to the lived experiences of Muslim communities from across the country who called for a special representative on combatting Islamophobia.

“This appointment will be another important step to building a safer and more inclusive Canada for everyone.” — The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion

“In December, the U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation requiring the State Department to create a special envoy to address and combat Islamophobia.

“During the federal election, a similar role was suggested as a first step to reduce Islamophobia domestically and internationally.

“As I write this on the eve of January 29, the Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, Ahmed Hussen, announced an “intention to appoint” a representative to a role like this.” — Monia Mazigh

“Muslim Association of Canada welcomes the announcement by the Hon. Ahmed Hussen to appoint a special representative on combatting Islamophobia.

“This was MAC’s number one recommendation in the National Action Summit on Islamophobia.

“Together we will combat Islamophobia in Canada.” — Muslim Association of Canada

“After the London terror attack, we called for action.

“Specifically, we asked the government to build out a special office tasked to dismantle Islamophobia.

“We are pleased to see the Government of Canada commit to building out this office, and while there is much left to do, this is an important step.” — Mustafa Farooq, CEO of the National Council of Canadian Muslims

“Islamophobia is unacceptable. Full stop.

“We need to put an end to this hate and make our communities safer for Muslim Canadians.

“To help with that, we intend to appoint a Special Representative on combatting Islamophobia.” — Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

“I welcome Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s unequivocal condemnation of Islamophobia & his plan to appoint a Special Representative to combat this contemporary scourge.

“His timely call to action resonates with what I have long argued.

“Let us join hands to put an end to this menace.” — Imran Khan, Prime Minister of Pakistan

“Looks like Canada’s federal government is finally appointing “a special representative on combatting Islamophobia.” (like the existing envoy on antisemitism)” — Steven Zhou

“The Government of Canada intends to appoint a Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia.

“Their definition of ‘Islamophobia’ :

As defined in Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy,

“Islamophobia includes racism, stereotypes, prejudice,
fear or acts of hostility directed towards individual Muslims or followers of Islam in general.

“In addition to individual acts of intolerance and racial profiling,
Islamophobia can lead to viewing and treating Muslims
as a greater security threat on an institutional, systemic and societal level.”

“Seems stronger than the UK’s All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) working definition :”

“Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism
that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.”

Wasiq, Trustee for Muslims Against Antisemitism, London, UK

“Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy, with a $45-million investment to combat racism, only mentions Islamophobia in the context of definition, and there is no program listed specifically to address Islamophobia.” — Waheed Khan, President of the Community of Federal Visible Minorities

( Image credit : Canadian Heritage )


Information about Islamophobia displayed with select books about Canadian Muslims inside Rosedale Heights School of the Arts, Library Learning Centre on January 28 2022.

And What is Islamophobia ?

Professor Imran Awan and Dr. Irene Zempi answer with :

A Working Definition of Islamophobia

“A fear, prejudice and hatred of Muslims or non-Muslim individuals that leads to provocation, hostility and intolerance by means of threatening, harassment, abuse, incitement and intimidation of Muslims and non-Muslims, both in the online and offline world.

“Motivated by institutional, ideological, political and religious hostility that transcends into structural and cultural racism which targets the symbols and markers of a being a Muslim.”

( Photo credit : Rosedale Heights School of the Arts VLLC / Toronto District School Board )


This poster was included within a resource titled “Interfaith Allyship Empathy Building and Islamophobia Presentation”.

Poster and resource were made available to Catholic schools board-wide during January 2021 within the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board in Ontario.

( Image via : Genevieve Anderson, Chaplain at Holy Name of Mary Catholic Secondary School, Brampton )


During January 2021, Muslim students attending Holy Name of Mary Catholic Secondary School, the only all-girls Catholic high school operating within the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board were asked the following question:

“What do you wish your teachers would understand about your faith practice, experiences of discrimination, and/or experience as a Muslim specifically?”

Those answers helped complete DPCDSB’s resource: “Interfaith Allyship Empathy Building and Islamophobia Presentation”.

Their answers appear in this composite image.

Recognition must be given to the school board for this effort.

This year, a grade 12 Muslim student gathered some quotes from various fellow Muslim Students at Holy Name of Mary Catholic Secondary School, HNM CSS, about their opinions on January 29th and what it stands for. Here they are below.

“Islam shouldn’t be something that should be feared and hated.

“If you see the people that practice what Islam truly is, you’ll see that it’s a very peaceful religion.” — Student at HNM CSS

“It is sickening to think that Muslims are victims of Islamophobia to this day in places like Canada.

“Constitutions like Bill 21 need to be re-examined because they contribute to the growing systemic discrimination in our country.” — Student at HNM CSS

“Although I didn’t think much about it when it happened, I catch myself thinking that it’ll happen when I’m at the mosque myself.

“I always check who is walking through the doors, and listen for irregular activity.” — Student at HNM CSS

Within a student body of 615, HNM CSS has 100 students who are Catholic.

Approximately 239 students or 38.9%, are Muslim.

( Image via : Genevieve Anderson, Chaplain at Holy Name of Mary Catholic Secondary School, Brampton )


“Thank you National Council of Canadian Muslims, for your wonderful session, ‘Islamophobia Disrupted: Adopting a Trauma Informed Lens’ and sharing incredible educator resources to support Muslim Students, Families and Staff, as well as ways schools can support the Green Square Campaign.” — Rachael McDonald, Kingston, Ontario

In the days leading up to January 29 2022, NCCM offered two virtual teach-ins on Disrupting Islamophobia as a resource for educators.

( Photo credit: Rachael McDonald )


Resources were made ready to support teachers at Blake Street Jr. Public School in Downtown Toronto, leading up to the first National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

( Photo credit : Blake Street Junior Public School, Toronto District School Board )


“Today we read In My Mosque together for our Live From The Library story to mark January 29th as the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia.

“Thanks to the Muslim Educators of Toronto Association for this great resource.” — Larkspur VLLC

( Photo credit : Larkspur Public School Virtual Library Learning Commons / Peel District School Board )


“Saturday is the Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Something that is close to my heart.

“Students learned a bit about Muslims and the importance of making our communities safe for everyone as Canada is home to all of us.” — Ms. Ahmed

“By far our favourite drawing and book activity from our week: Peace Train.

“Tied perfectly into our lesson about Islam/Muslims.

“KF-1V now knows about a famous Muslim!

“Great way to acknowledge Muslim contributions to the arts and combat Islamophobia.” — Ms. Ahmed, Virtual Kindergarten Teacher, Viola Desmond Public School, Milton, Ontario

( Image credit : Ms. Ahmed )


This year the Green Square Campaign included the Green Letters Campaign.

Bulletin board inside Oscar Peterson Public School in Mississauga, Ontario, filled with Green Square artwork created by students from kindergarten to grade five.

Green Squares made to celebrate love and kindness and standing against Islamophobia.

( Photo credit : Ms. Jagdev )


“Today in kindergarten we read ‘A World of Kindness’ and shared ways we can be kind and make others feel welcome.

“We each created a green square for our mobile to recognize #GreenSquareCampaign🟩” — Leah Shea

( Photo credit : Leah Shea / Half Moon Bay Public School, Ottawa-Carleton District School Board )


Kindergarten Children in Nepean, Ontario making green squares by crayoning, colouring, collaging, cutting, or painting.

( Photo credit : Leah Shea / Half Moon Bay Public School )





Mobile of Green Squares, some with words, made by kindergarten students, being dislayed in their Ottawa area class room window.

( Photo credit : Leah Shea / Half Moon Bay Public School )


“The Green Square Campaign seeks to remember the victims and survivors of the Quebec City mosque attack.

“The green square represents the green carpets of the Quebec City mosque, where the victims last stood to pray.” — Hawthorne Public School, Ottawa, Ontario

( Photo credit : Hawthorne Public School )


“Proud of our Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute community who took part in a week long #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 and created this poster to remember the victims of the Quebec City Mosque Shooting.” — Ms J. Yamashita, Guidance Educator, Toronto District School Board

( Photo credit : Ms J. Yamashita )


Green felt squares were distributed to students in their classes at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute in Toronto during Period 1 on January 27 2022.

( Photo credit : Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute Student Activity Council )


Tableful of two inch by two inch green felt squares with silver and gold safety pins ready for distribution at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute in Toronto on January 27 2022.

( Photo credit : Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute Student Activity Council )


“Today, we remember the tragic Quebec City Mosque shooting.

“Today, we remember Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzeddine Soufiane, and Aboubaker Thabti — lives that have been taken too soon.

“Today, we stand in solidarity with those who have been injured during the attack and those who are suffering the consequences of the despicable act of violence.

“Today, we stand against Islamophobia.

“MGCI remembers January 29th.” — Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute, Toronto

( Photo credit : Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute Student Activity Council )


Starting January 25th, students at Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute were able to visit the main office foyer during lunch to sign their pledge against Islamophobia.

Their signed green squares then became part of the poster displayed.

Seen here are MGCI Students wearing green felt squares in front of the Green Square Campaign poster.

( Photo credit : Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute Student Activity Council )


“Trillium Woods Public School paused for National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Today represents a day of hope, where we can come together for a Canada that is free from Islamophobia and all forms of hate.” — Sayeda Datoo, Principal, York Region District School Board

( Photo credit : Sayeda Datoo )


“January 29th, 2017 was a tragic day for us all.

“We lost the lives of 6 members of our Muslim community who were peacefully praying right on the lush green carpets of the Quebec City mosque.

“Please stop by the Dawah Center today and grab a green square to wear and join us in solidarity as we remember the victims and their families.

“We ask you all to keep them in your du’ās when you come for salah.” — Saskatoon Dawah Centre, 2220 20th Street West, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

( Photo credit : Saskatoon Dawah and Community Centre )


“AsalamAlayKum wa Rahmatullah wa Barakatahu.

“My dear Brothers and Sisters in the Muslim community all over the world and specifically in Canada.

“My name is Imam Mahmoud Omar.

“I’m the Imam of Rashid Mosque.

“My dear Brothers and Sisters, as you know, tomorrow in the Friday Qhutbah, all the Imams around Canada will talk about the Green Square campaign, which you see it right here.

“And it will raise awareness of what happened in Quebec City, January 29th, 2017.

“It’s very important, my dear brothers and sisters, to raise this awareness, to speak against Islamophobia and all kinds of racism.

“My dear brothers and sisters, stay tuned with us Friday, tomorrow, in Al Rashid Mosque, we will definitely talk about this in the Qhutbah.

“May Allah (SWT) protect us and all our families.

“Wa SalamAlayKum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatahu.”

( Photo credit : Al Rashid Mosque, Edmonton, Alberta )


“Today, I dedicate my Friday Sermon to remembering the tragic Quebec Mosque shooting on January 29, 2017.

“It took the lives of 6 innocent souls and injured 19.

“I pray The All-Mighty give them Paradise, ameen.” — Shaikh Musleh Khan, Islamic Institute of Toronto

( Photo credit : Musleh Khan )


Hundreds of pre-cut Green Squares with pins were made ready to be handed out to Friday Worshippers at Waverley Grand Mosque in Winnipeg.

Attendees to Jumah Prayers were asked to show support and remembrance by wearing them.

( Photo credit : Manitoba Islamic Association )


“As part of the #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 we were handing out green square pins before and after Jumua.

“Thank you Jazāk Allāhu Khayran to everyone who picked one up! 🟩” — Manitoba Islamic Association

( Photo credit : Manitoba Islamic Association )


“Our Imam discussed the Islamic perspective of how to handle Islamophobia.” — Masjid Bilal / Islamic Society of Cumberland, Ottawa, Ontario

Jumu’ah Prayer on Friday January 28th 2022.

( Photo credit : Masjid Bilal / Islamic Society of Cumberland )


Brother Asim Malik reading the Muslim Council of Peel’s Statement on National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia :

“…The Quebec City Mosque terror attack was the first mass attack against Canadian Muslims and worst mass murder in a house of worship in Canada’s history.

“Today, we honour and pray for Imbrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzedine Soufiane, Aboubaker Thabti.

“Since this devastating crime in 2017, racism and hatred, manifested in the form of Islamophobia, are serious issues that have significantly affected Canadian Muslims.

“To illustrate, the slain killing of Mohamed-Aslim Zafis at the doors of the Etobicoke Mosque, the terrorist attack in London, Ontario, and the continued hate crimes against Muslims, are just a few examples of this hate.

“As a result the Canadian government declared January 29 to be a National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia in order to honour the victims and express solidarity with the survivors….”

Muslim Council of Peel’s statement was read aloud to the congregation after Jumah Prayers inside Sayeda Khadija Centre in Mississauga, Ontario on Friday afternoon, January 28 2022.

( Photo credit : Sayeda Khadija Centre )


Shaikh Dr. Abdalla Idris Ali, Executive Director of ISNA Canada, inside the prayer hall of Islamic Centre of Canada in Mississauga, Ontario.

“On National Remembrance Day of the victims of the Quebec Mosque attack, we raise our hands together to make dua’a for them and their families.

“May Allah grant us the strength to uphold justice and stand in the face of all of those who mean our community harm. Ameen.” — ISNA Canada

“AsalamAlayKum Wa T’Allah wa Barakatahu

“When we have sad memories of sorrow, of pain, we always turn to Allah, Glorified and Praised be He.

“We know that each and every one of us, every living being is going to die.

“Allah, Glorified and Praised be He, decreed this.

“But he didn’t tell us how, where and when.

“And this is why we all have to be ready.

“Someday we are going to hand over to Allah, Glorified and Praised be He, not by our choice, but by the will of God Almighty.

“So what happened in Quebec, partly it is determined by Allah, Glorified and Praised be He.

“Allah has his own divine wisdom for it.

“All we need to do in times like this is to turn to Allah, Glorified and Praised be He, to make it easier for the families who lost their fathers, and lost their brothers, and who lost their sisters, and lost the dear ones to them.

“And also to give them the comfort that Allah, Glorified and Praised be He, will receive these dislaced people in the best of places, in Paradise, InshAllah.

“So the Dua or the Prayer that we always make is the following.

“We say :

‘Oh Allah forgive them, have mercy on them,

Oh Allah Forgive their sins,

Oh Allah honour them, expand their abode,

Oh Allah forgive them with your Mercy, oh most Merciful.

Oh Allah grant them the company of the Prophets, the saints, the martyrs, the righteous and those are the best of companions.

Oh Allah do not prevent us our share in their reward and do not cause us to go astray after them.

Oh Allah forgive us and them, and make Paradise their final abode, with your Mercy, oh most Merciful.

Oh Allah forgive them, a complete forgiveness, oh most Merciful.

Oh Allah grant them the company of the saints, the martyrs, the righteous and those are the best of companions.

This is Allah’s favour, and Allah knows ‘who deserves it’ [4:70].

Oh Allah grant their family patience and solace

Oh Allah grant their family patience and solace

Oh Allah grant their family patience and solace

Oh Allah grant us a mercy that suffices us from any other mercy than yours, oh most Merciful.

Oh Allah send your peace and blessings on our Prophet Muhammad, and his family and companions.

All Glory to God, Glorious and Majestic is He from all their descriptions, and praises upon the Prophets and Praise be to God, Lord of the worlds.’

Dr. Abdalla Idris Ali, Executive Director of ISNA Canada

( Photo credit : ISNA Canada )


“On the eve of January 29th, we remember the 6 martyrs killed while praying at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec at the hands of an Islamophobe.” — ISNA Canada

Minaret of Islamic Centre of Canada in Mississauga, Ontario, illuminated Green on Friday night.

This campus is headquarters to ISNA Canada, the Islamic Society of North America in Canada.

“ISNA Canada going green for the National Remembrance Day of the victims of the Quebec Mosque attack.

“May Allah grant the martyrs the highest place in Jannah and grant us the strength to uphold justice and stand in the face of all of those who mean our community harm.

“May our mosques always remain a place of safety and solace for our communities. Ameen.” — ISNA Canada

( Photo credit : ISNA Canada )


“At the request of the Ministerial Committee on Anti-Racism, Confederation Building will be lit green from Friday, January 28 until Sunday, January 30.

“The colour green has long been associated with Islamic faith.

“Minister Byrne will join President of the Muslim Association of Newfoundland and Labrador, Dr. Syed Pirzada, at Confederation Building at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, January 28, to observe the occasion.” — Executive Council, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador

( Photo credit : Gerry Byrne )


“January 29 will be respected in Newfoundland & Labrador the Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia.

“Tonight, to honour the victims & show solidarity with our Muslim community, we bathed Confederation Building in green light.” — Gerry Byrne, Minister of Immigration, Population Growth and Skills

( Photo credit : Gerry Byrne )


“Tonight, Dr. Mansoor Pirzada, President of the Muslim Association of Newfoundland and Labrador and I lit Confederation ‘green’ to remember those lost and the urgency of the fight against Islamophobia.

“It will stay lit for the next three days and nights.” — Gerry Byrne, Minister of Immigration, Population Growth and Skills

( Photo credit : Gerry Byrne )


“In advance of the anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque attack, my office was lit green to honour the victims. 🟩

“We stand united to oppose Islamophobia & hate in our schools, communities & across our province, especially here in King Township-Vaughan.” — Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education for Ontario.

( Photo credit: Stephen Lecce )


“Saturday will mark the 5th anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque Attack.

“In recognition and remembrance, on Saturday January 29th, Canada will observe the first National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Tonight, Saturday, and Sunday, passersby will see City Hall lit up bright green in solidarity with the families of the victims, as well as sign of our dedication to stand against Islamophobia, racism, hate, and religious discrimination.” — Drew Dilkens, Mayor of Windsor, Ontario

( Photo credit : Drew Dilkens )


« Le 29 janvier prochain, l’hôtel de ville de Brossard sera éclairé en vert.

» Les villes canadiennes illumineront leurs plus importants monuments en vert à l’approche du 5e triste anniversaire de la fusillade au Centre culturel islamique de Québec.

» Alors que les membres de la communauté tournent leur cœur et leur esprit vers la commémoration, assurons-nous de nous souvenir avec eux.

» Face à cet épisode sombre de l’histoire du Canada, faisons preuve d’introspection et marchons côte à côte dans la quête d’un pays dénué de haine.

» Ce 29 janvier sera également la première ” Journée nationale de commémoration de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec et d’action contre l’islamophobie”.

» Vous pouvez rejoindre le mouvement :
– Demandez à votre ville de se souvenir avec nous, de montrer votre solidarité en illuminant vos monuments en vert.
– Publiez vos photos des monuments illuminés dans votre région avec le hashtag #greensquare🟩.

» Au cours des prochains jours, nous afficherons plus de monuments à travers le pays qui seront éclairés en vert le 29 janvier.

» Restez à l’affut.

» Merci à une résidente de Brossard d’avoir rendue cette illumination possible. » — Conseil National des musulmans canadiens

( Animation credit : Conseil National des musulmans canadiens )


“For some Canadians today is a day of hashtags.

“For me, today is a reminder that our friends were murdered for walking while Muslim.

“Many Muslim Canadians still live in fear because there are fellow Canadians who do not want them to exist. #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 #ourlondonfamily

“Like the fellow Canadian who sent me a death threat when I was 13 because I dared to write a letter to the editor that was published.

“Like the many fellow Canadians that have sent me anonymous messages filled with hate.

“Many of whom hide behind their keyboards but work everyday in Canadian communities alongside you and I.

“So I hope that my fellow Canadians remember that we are you. You are us. Muslim Canadians come from diverse communities with diverse perspectives.

“And I hope that my fellow Canadians will heed my words from a few short months ago:

“I ask of you all, please, never, ever, look away from the hatred that lives within our midst.

“Do not give it oxygen.

“Starve it with love.

“Suffocate it with compassion.” — Javeed Sukhera MD PhD, London, Ontario

( Image credit : Javeed Sukhera MD PhD )


“On this the anniversary of this horrendous event, as much as I remember being shocked and saddened by news of the tragedy, I remember hearing Desmond Cole speaking on CANADALAND about the failure of so many Canadians – and Canadian media – to recognize this as a Canadian crime against fellow Canadians.

“I was inspired by his call that all Canadians should know the names of these men so I reached out to the CCIQ Mosque through DawaNet Canada and Tariq Syed, producer of “Your Last Walk in the Mosque”, and let them know what I was thinking.

“They kindly offered me a square of green carpet from the mosque.⁠

“Initial work to put the names of the men on the carpet was done by Lana Kuidir and the swatch will be adjusted and installed in the case by Holly Boileau with the support of Harbourfront Centre.

“This last phase of the work has been delayed by COVID-19 restrictions but will be done as soon as we can get into those studios (with thanks, as always, to Melanie Egan).⁠

“The names of the men appear in the order of the faces in the image.⁠

“You heard about my decision to remove most of Don Cherry’s contribution from the lid of our Calton case and it seems fitting to me that this remembrance of the victims of the CCIQ mosque shooting should occupy that space instead.⁠” — Jowi Taylor, Six String Nation

( Image credit : Six String Nation / Jowi Taylor )


Déclaration des Montréal Canadiens en cette Journée nationale de commémoration de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec et d’action contre l’islamophobie

Montreal Canadiens statement on the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia

( Diptych credit : Montréal Canadiens )


Quebec Bill 21 Cartoon.

Published Thursday April 4 2019, iPolitics.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Bruce MacKinnon / iPolitics )


“Five years ago, I wrote about the massacre at the mosque in Quebec City and how it affected my children, my community and me.

“Last June I wrote about how terrified I felt to go for a walk after a family was murdered in London, Ontario.

“Islamophobia affects your daily existence. I think about it when I get the mail, when I get hate mail, and when other Muslims are too afraid to speak out about injustices.

“Racism is part of a system of white supremacy. And violent anti-Muslim behaviour stems from that.

“I will always feel a deep sadness about January 29th just like I feel a deep sadness when I think about Christchurch, NZ, and Synagogues, Churches, Mandirs and Gudwaras being violated in a brutal manner.

“Women friends of mine have de-jabbed, men have shaved beards, and changed names of their children, we take self-defense classes and we ask our elderly parents to stay home. We do what we feel we need to in order to protect ourselves.

“If you aren’t being actively anti-racist, then you are part of the system that upholds it.” — Shireen Ahmed

“I’m a sports journalist & a Muslim woman.

“Today is Hockey Day in Canada but also the day that remembers January 29 massacre of Muslims in Ste. Foy.

“I am choosing to recognize both.

“Because that, too, is a part of my survival and resistance inshaAllah.” — Shireen Ahmed

( Photo credit : Courtney Szto )


“I know people look to me as a prominent Canadian Muslim to say something profound on January 29.

“It’s honestly hard to engage with this day without getting upset about where we are 5 years after innocent Muslims were murdered.

“My presence on TV is a win, but there’s so much work to do.

“I would love January 29th to be the day we get a break and everyone else does the work.” — Ginella Massa

( Photo Credit : Ginella Massa )


“Standing proud with the CityNews Montreal team as we participate in the #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 in solidarity with the six men who lost their lives due to hate, five years ago today.

“My heart is full of gratitude for the love and support so many of you have shown me today.

“From sending me pictures and videos of yourselves and your families with your green squares, to kind words and loving check-ins.

“Thank you from the bottom of my heart ❤️ and a special virtual hug to my colleagues Brittany Henriques and Alyssia Rubertucci, Pamela Pagano, thank you.” — Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed, Montréal, Québec

( Photo credit : Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed )


“We are protesting because we have a group of CBSA officers who are meant to represent the Minister of Public Safety,

“With regards to CBSA officers, who have been using claims, bogus claims from Islamophobic websites to deny entrance of Asylum Seekers.” — Mostafa Mahmoud, Egyptian Canadian Council for Democracy

Several dozen people protesting outside Federal Minister Marco Mendicino’s constituency office on Lawrence Avenue West in Toronto on Saturday afternoon.

But WHY, of all days, are they protesting TODAY : January 29 ?

Because January 29 2022 is National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack AND January 29 2022 is ALSO National Day of Action Against Islamophobia.

On this first federally designated National Day of Action Against Islamophobia,

Rallies are taking place in Montreal, Vancouver and Ottawa, in addition to here in Toronto calling on the Government to end Islamophobia inside the Canadian Border Services Agency.

( Photo credit : Richard Lautens / Toronto Star )


“In 2019, while there were fewer overall police-reported hate crimes targeting religion, those targeting the Muslim population rose by 9%

“In the last 5 years, more Muslims have been killed in targeted hate-attacks in Canada than in any other G7 country.

“It took four years for the federal government to commemorate this tragedy and address the anti-Muslim sentiment that led to it.

“The lack of support for commemorating the mosque massacre was underscored by negative public attitudes toward Canadian Muslims.” — The Muslim Law Students’ Association at Osgoode Hall Law School

( Snapshot credit : Osgoode MLSA )


Mohamed-Aslim Zafis – IMO of Toronto

Still image from IMO of Toronto’s security camera video recording a moment before the tragic killing of brother Mohamed-Aslim Zafis on Saturday September 12 2020.

The security video shows a man who is linked to a Neo-Nazi group, walk over and slit the throat of the masjid volunteer.

The Zafis Family wanted the Canadian public to be able to view the hard-to-watch video to understand the undeniable consequences of Islamophobia.

It is too hard to watch.

During the hardest days of the Corona Virus Pandemic with its strict physical distancing, many families with loved ones dying inside hospital intensive care units, were not able to say goodbye in person.

Some families were able to have a last video call, a final facetime recording with their dying loved one.

The Zafis Family didn’t get any chance for that final facetime video call.

They got a soundless security video instead.

( Image credit : National Council of Canadian Muslims / International Muslims Organization of Toronto / Zafis Family )


“Bebe Zafis’s father Mohamed-Aslim Zafis was murdered sitting outside a Toronto mosque greeting those heading in for prayer.

“Islamophobia is alive and well in Canada. Name it. Face it. Act.” — Farah Nasser, News Anchor, GlobalTV

“He was always loving, caring, had a sense of humour

“He brought joy to my life from the day I was born until now.

“I see my dad sitting in that chair and someone comes from the back … and stabs him.

“He’d been sitting there his whole life doing what he does for people.

“Why do you have the right to kill him? A loving, caring father.

“The hate needs to stop.

“We’re all one kind of people, whether you’re Christian, Hindu or Muslim.

“I don’t want [another] family to go through what I’m going through.

“Don’t let it happen to a next family because it’s very painful. I want it to stop.” — Bebe Zafis, Daughter of Mohamed-Aslim Zafis

( Photo credit : Farah Nasser )


Mohamed-Aslim Zafis, a 58-year-old father and volunteer caretaker at the International Muslims Organization of Toronto masjid in Rexdale, Etobicoke.

“Mohamed’s special task, he wanted to be the leader in ensuring everyone who enters the mosque meets the pandemic protocols and health requirements by wearing a mask and properly sanitizing.

“It was so refreshing and fulfilling for someone like Mohamed to come forward and ask for that specific responsibility.

“During hamper preparations and between services at IMO, he would jump up and do whatever he could.” — Omar Farouk, President of the International Muslims Organization of Toronto

Mohamed-Aslim Zafis dedicated the last day of his life, Saturday September 12 2020, to providing food boxes to the needy during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

“What happened to him, as we know, he was there, controlling the entry into the mosque to comply with COVID-19 restrictions.

“So he was performing a good community service, helping not only Muslims, but helping us Canadians in general to keep the COVID-19 infections at a low number.

“And he was there usually with another person, but the other person just went to use the washroom.

“And that person said to me,

“In just the three minutes that I left to go and use the washroom, when I came back, I found my brother there, bleeding.”

“It was quite traumatic for that person in particular, and for others who were close to him.

“The Imam had actually just spoken to him and he told the Imam, he reminded the Imam that there is a family of New Canadians who could use some food, and some food should be saved for them.

“So the Imam went to the kitchen to conserve some food for that refugee family.

“It is in this time, when he was just alone for just a few minutes, that the attacker came by and stabbed him in the neck.

“It is just so sad that he died in such a horrific way.

“Those who were on the scene, the volunteers who came and quickly surrounded him, the Imam, they didn’t know what to do, and they just saw the blood gushing out.

“And the paramedics rushed to the scene.

“Police came to the scene.

“Everybody tried to do what they could do to save him, but as we say in the Islamic tradition:

‘God has determined and what He decides, prevails.’

“His death actually coalesced the community in a way that I haven’t seen previously.

“At his service, we found that there were people representing a wide variety of faiths.

“A Rabbi spoke, and a Christian Pastor, a Hindu Pundit.

“So there were representatives of various faiths, all expressing their grief and their shock at the passing of this one person.

“Yes, he was one person, but now he has become a symbol and a rallying point for people to think together about hate in our community and as a Canadian society, and violence and how to eradicate hate and violence from Canadian society and from the world.

“Volunteers are actually putting themselves there on the front line.

“Not only are they performing services, but they are actually putting themselves in the line of fire, let’s put it this way.

“When this happened, I became fearful for our volunteers at our mosque, because as they too are standing at the door controlling entry to limit the numbers in accordance with restrictions laid down by government authorities and also prescribed by medical experts.

“So they’re there, in the front line, and if an attack should happen on our mosque, something like what happened in New Zealand, and prior to that in Quebec City, then these would be the first persons to be hit.

“So they are really performing very important services, and their contributions need to be recognized and acknowledged and praised.

“This brother, Mohamed-Aslim Zafis, has actually joined a long line of historical figures in our ummah, who have actually been killed in a violent way while they were serving the community.

“Umar, the second caliph of Islam was stabbed when he came and prayed in the mosque.

“Ali, the fourth caliph of Islam was also stabbed when he prayed in the mosque, the early-morning prayer.

“And so he has actually joined this legacy of martyrs and Shuhada in the cause of God, and we prayed that Allah will resurrect him on the Day of Judgment in the company of those great servants of the faith.” — Dr. Shabbir Ally, President of The Islamic Information Centre / Let The Quran Speak

( Photo credit : Roy Zafis / International Muslims Organization of Toronto )


“A serene & a moving funeral earlier today for late Mohamed-Aslim Zafis who was killed by knife stabbing last Saturday [September 12 2020] in front of IMO masjid in Toronto where he volunteered.

“May Allah cover him with His Mercy!

“Truly to Allah we belong & Truly to Him we will return!” — Imam Dr. Hamid Slimi, A former Imam at IMO of Toronto, current Imam at Sayeda Khadija Centre in Mississauga, Ontario

Wednesday September 16 2020.

( Photo credit : Imam Dr. Hamid Slimi )


Mohamed-Aslim Zafis was ensuring COVID-19 health safety protocols were followed by those entering the IMO masjid.

Pandemic physical distancing and mask wearing safety measures were observed by all those attending his Janaza, his Funeral, on Wednesday September 16 2020 in the same parking lot in front of IMO of Toronto, where he was when he was killed.

He did not die from the Pandemic, but died during it.

He did not die from the Corona Virus, but was killed because of Islamophobia.

The Pandemic is not over, but we are already forgetting it.

On this National Day of Remembrance, we cannot forget Mohamed-Aslim Zafis.

We must remember him.

We must remember why we remember him.

( Photo credit : Imam Dr. Hamid Slimi )


“Islamophobia and hatred have consequences!

“Today is the 5th anniversary of the act of terror that killed 6 men at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec.

“They simply went to pray at a mosque & did not come back home to their families.

“Islamophobia fueled violence did not start in St. Foy Québec, nor did it end there.

“After Quebec, there was the sensless murder of Mohamed Aslim-Zafis at an Etobicoke Mosque that I regularly visit.

“This was followed by the tragic murder of the Afzaal family in London, Ontario, last summer.

“Sending love to everyone impacted by these tragedies & much appreciation for the resiliency of Muslim communities across Canada who continue to endure so much trauma & hate.

“I know you need more than words.

“I know you need more than thoughts & prayers.

“I know that a few announcements or new funding won’t fix years of systemic discrimination.

“But, as leaders in Government we can & will have to keep working harder to do better.

“We must continue to act with urgency.

“At the same time, we need to continue to see leadership from all Canadians to stand up for our fellow citizens.

“Now more than ever.

“When a young Muslim girl or family is not afraid to walk down the street in fear of being attacked or when you stop looking for the emergency exit when you visit your place of worship.

“Then perhaps we can say we have made real progress.

“There is reason to be hopeful, but it is far easier to be in despair.

“Let us stand together, to continue to fight against Islamophobia & hate everyday.” — The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Federal Minister and Member of Parliament

( Photo credit : Dr. Rima Berns-McGown )


“On January 29, I will be wearing my green square in remembrance of the 2017 attack on the Masjid in Quebec City.

“Six lives taken, an act of violence, an act of despicable Islamophobia.

“And as a country, we remember this act, we remember this violence.

“And recommit, to do everything we can to confront Islamophobia, to stay united as a country, to build that inclusive Canada that we know is possible.

“A few years ago, I visited the Quebec Masjid during an FCM meeting in Quebec City.

“It was during Ramadan, when I was there, I broke my fast with the leadership of the Masjid.

“And I remember being taken aback, horrified, as I looked at that Masjid and there were still some bullet marks from where the attack happened.

“And we’re a family in Canada, we have to stick up for each other.

“And part of the Canadian dream is that everyone has the ability to practice their faith without intimidation, without violence.

“And when an attack like this happens, it attacks our country to the core.

“Religious freedom is a foundational value.

“And we need to make sure, as a country, we stick up for one another.

“We protect those foundational values.

“So on January 29, I will be remembering the lives lost.

“In the city of Brampton, we’ll be lighting our clock tower green and lowering our flags, and sending the message that we will do everything we can to fight Islamophobia in our city and across the country.” — Patrick Brown, Mayor of Brampton, Ontario

( Photo credit : City of Brampton )


“On January 29th, the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque attack, we remember the victims of the tragic shooting that killed six Muslim men and injured many more.

“On January 29th, we wear green squares to symbolize the green carpet of the City Mosque – where the victims last stood to pray.

“It symbolizes the fact that the deceased are, God willing, in a green garden, in a better place since they left us that night.

“Today, we come together to fight against Islamophobia.” — Muslim Students Association, Sandalwood Heights Secondary School, Brampton, Ontario

( Photo credit : Sandalwood MSA )


“This weekend, Fanshawe joins the City of London, Ontario & stands in solidarity with the Muslim community by lighting our sign green in commemoration of the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia on January 29.

“The #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 remembers the victims and survivors of the Quebec City mosque attack and represents the green carpets of the Quebec City mosque, where victims last stood to pray.

“January 29 is a day of commemoration and also of hope for a Canada free of hate and Islamophobia.

“Today and every day, Fanshawe stands against Islamophobia.

“We encourage our campus community members to learn how they can support the #GreenSquareCampaign🟩.” — Fanshawe College, London, Ontario

“On January 29, 2017, a Quebec City Mosque was attacked. 6 Muslim men were killed.

“Azzeddine Soufiane, Khalid Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Ibrahim’s Barry, and Abdelkrim Hassane lost their lives, with dozens more left critically injured.

“This weekend, Fanshawe College joins Canada and the City of London in remembering January 29, the impact this day has had on these families and the Muslim community, and stands in solidarity with the Muslim community.

“Today we light our sign green in commemoration of the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“The #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 remembers the victims and survivors of the Quebec City Mosque Attack, and represents the green carpets of the Quebec City Mosque where victims last stood to pray.

“Today and every day, Fanshawe College and our School of Community Studies stands against Islamophobia.” — Fanshawe Community Studies

( Photo credit : Fanshawe College )



“On the National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia,

“We’re sharing books for adults and children

“That give voice to the discrimination, hatred and Islamophobia that are a daily reality for Muslims everywhere :

Results 1 – 23 of 23 for National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia” — London Public Library

( Image credit : London Public Library )


Our London Family

“Bonjour tout le monde.

“This January 29th, Canada as a country will mark the federally designated National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia.

“Five years ago in 2017, a gunman entered the place of worship in the middle of prayer and congregation, and opened fire on Muslim worshippers killing six and injuring many more.

“This green square symbolizes the green carpet of the mosque where the victims last stood to pray.

“I wear this green square today to remember the victims and survivors of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and as a commitment to stand against Islamophobia in all its forms.

“This is hatred we know all too well in my city, where four members of the Afzaal Family were murdered in a terrorist attack last summer while out for a walk in North West London.

“I know we as cities, we as a country, must do better.

“I know that together that Canada will be safer place for people of all backgrounds.

“And I invite you to join me and Canadians across the country to wear the green square, to stand against Islamophobia and hate, and for a better future, for all Canadians.” — Ed Holder, Mayor of London, Ontario

( Photo credit : Ed Holder )


“It was a beautiful summer’s day last Sunday [June 6 2021] in London, Ontario.

“It should have stayed that way.

“Syed Salman Afzaal, mom Talaat Kidwai, wife Madiha, their 15-year-old daughter, Yumna, and nine-year-old son, Fayez, had just finished dinner and prepared to go for a walk in the park across the street from their home, as they often did.

“Little did they know that they were being watched.

“By a human hyena, lying in wait.

“The family waited at the pedestrian crossing and Salman was right behind them; exchanging greetings with a friend who was driving past.

“Suddenly, a pick-up truck appeared out of nowhere.

“Driving straight into the Afzaal family — crushing them to death.

“A painful end for four of them.

“Three generations extinguished in the blink of an eye.

“Young Fayez, the only survivor, suffering a shattered femur, was found bleeding and gasping for breath.

“The killer vanished into the darkness only to reappear some seven kilometres away in a deserted parking lot.

“A taxi driver was taking a short break close by.

“The murderer disembarked from his vehicle and laughed loudly, proudly claiming to have killed a bunch of Muslims.

“The shocked taxi driver gathered his wits and called 911.

“The police arrived promptly and apprehended the culprit.

“Underneath his bullet-proof vest, police were confronted by a t-shirt emblazoned with swastikas.

“He was taken away, still shouting anti-Muslim slogans.

“It was definitely not a crime of passion but pre-meditated murder.

“The neo-Nazi truck driver bought a brand new Dodge Ram truck in the run-up to the attack and fitted it with a grill to inflict maximum damage.

“He then dressed for battle, complete with helmet and bullet-proof vest.

“It is terrorism borne of Islamophobia.” — Hafeez Khan

( Diptych photographs : Susan Cossey ; Dale Carruthers )


“I was actually driving to get gas at the Petro just up the road around 8:30.

“I was sitting at a red light just at a neighbourhood intersection, with about twenty other cars there as well.

“I was headed southboud.

“And all of a sudden, the light was still red.

“All of a sudden I just saw a flash of black and my car shook pretty well.

“And the car next to me did as well.

“They actually rolled down their window, asked if I was all right.

“It was just something that we thought was weird.

“They had come over the median, looked like they had come from the actual other side of the road, the direction that they were going and the speed that they were going at as well.

“It was just out of place at any time, but especially on a Sunday evening, in our seemingly mostly quiet neighbourhood.

“Then about five minutes later, after I got some gas, I headed back.

“That’s when I saw, after I came up over Sarnia Road, just cars backed up.

“There wasn’t that many emergency vehicles yet, but I could see in my rear view mirror that they were all coming from behind me.

“Then it was just chaos, and there were people everywhere running, and citizens just trying to direct emergency vehicles where to go.

“There’s a lot of pointing and screaming, and arms waving.

“It was just absolutely like something that you never want to see.

“There was individuals just being attended to and see compressions.

“It’s just that absolute panic mode.

“That continued well into night.” — Paige Martin

Miranda Campbell and her family were driving home Sunday night, June 6 2021, when they pulled up to a line of cars stopped at a green light at Hyde Park Road and South Carriage Road.

Drivers were coming out of their vehicles, talking on their cellphones.

Maybe it’s a car crash, she thought, but there weren’t any damaged vehicles.

Then she saw the injured on the ground.

“You should go out there and help,” her husband told her.

Nurse Practitioner Miranda Campbell was scared and confused.

“There were no ambulances, no police, just bystanders on their phones pacing.” — Miranda Campbell

When she opened the car door, the full thrust of the scene hit her.

“I’m trying to figure out what the hell happened, people were screaming and crying — it was chaos.” — Miranda Campbell

She recognized a local chiropractor who was trying to help.

She saw a woman standing over an older woman on the ground, unsure what to do.

Campbell got down, checked for a pulse, but couldn’t find one.

She didn’t want to move the injured woman in case of a spinal injury.

She noticed the woman’s traditional Muslim clothing was in tatters, leaving her exposed.

“I just covered her up, I wanted to give her dignity.” — Miranda Campbell

Then she began chest compressions and didn’t stop until a paramedic arrived and took over.

Next to her a police officer was giving chest compressions to a younger woman.

Campbell took her pulse. Nothing.

“There’s children, there’s children,” someone yelled.

She noticed a young boy on the ground.

“He was facing the whole thing: He saw his mom’s body laying there, his grandma’s body.” — Miranda Campbell

Then more screams.

“There’s another child!” someone yelled.

She saw a purple scrunchy on the sidewalk and a bunch of shoes.

“Their shoes were scattered all over the grass, all over the sidewalk.” — Miranda Campbell

She looked closer at the shoes.

“All these tire tracks on them.

“I saw the tire tracks that came up on the sidewalk, and up onto the grass, and then back out on the street again.” — Miranda Campbell

First Responders had arrived.

Campbell got back into her car, where her husband and their two teenage sons were waiting.

The family went home.

But she couldn’t stop thinking about the boy.

“I was praying all night that one of those adults would survive so that little, little boy is not going to be left alone.

“He looked so scared and shaking and helpless on the ground covered up with a blanket — I can’t get that out of my head — I just wanted to give him a hug.” — Miranda Campbell

She also kept thinking about the older woman she tried to help.

“When I saw her traditional clothing, I thought ‘I really hope this is not race related.’

“The next day when I found out, it just made me feel 100 times worse.

“What the hell kind of world are we living in?” — Miranda Campbell

Racism had been top of mind for her family.

Campbell is Indigenous and her husband is Jamaican.

She said she had been talking to her children, who are biracial, about how to deal with racism, especially in the wake of the discovery of what is believed to be the unmarked graves of 215 children at a former residential school in Kamloops, British Columbia.

“I tell my kids ‘you’re gonna experience racism all the time and it’s the way that you handle it is how you’re going to learn.’

“You can’t help what other people think, but you can teach yourself not to treat other people badly.” — Miranda Campbell

( Dashcam video : Darrin Calcutt )


On Sunday June 6 2021, three generations of a Canadian family in London, Ontario were targeted and killed for Walking While Muslim.

“I feel that Islamophobia, this is a real thing.

“It’s not only just talking. It’s real on the ground. There’s effect of it.

“In Canada, we have three tragedies about that.

“One in Quebec City, with 6 people dead.

“In Toronto, the man who was slaughtered in the front of the mosque.

“Now with four people from the same family. It’s a very tragic event.” — Mohamed Labidi, co-founder and former president of the Quebec City mosque

“It’s like seeing the same horrible movie again.

“We are seeing the blood on the walls again.

“We are seeing the blood on the mosque carpets again.

“We are seeing all the people screaming, crying, grieving.

“It’s reliving the same funeral again.

“The wound has not healed yet, it’s reopened again.

“I see myself — and I’m quite sure the victims in Quebec City see themselves — in the same place they were in January 2017.”

“I cannot sleep at night thinking about this young boy in hospital.

“All his family is dead. When he comes out of hospital, how will his life be?

“I know orphans, I know people who lost their father or their mother or their sister.

“But this young boy lost all of them. In front of his eyes. It’s beyond understanding.” — Imam Hassan Guillet, who presided over the funerals of the Quebec City mosque attack victims

On Thursday June 10 2021, The Islamic Cultural Centre of Québec began fundraising in support of the orphaned 9 year old boy, the sole survivor of the targeted Islamophobic attack :

Campagne de soutien pour la famille Salman

“Une famille musulmane a été décimée par un acte terroriste islamophobe.

“Apportez votre aide et votre soutien pour la famille des victimes et pour le dernier survivant de la famille Fayez Salman : le jeune garçon de 9 ans grièvement blessé.

“Qu’Allah agrée les 4 martyrs :

• Salman Afzaal, 46 ans, le père et un physiothérapeute,
• Madiha Salman, 44 ans, mère et épouse, étudiante au doctorat en génie civil,
• Yumna Salman, 15 ans, leur fille qui terminait sa neuvième année à l’école secondaire Oakridge,
• Talat Afzaal, la grand-mère des enfants, âgée de 74 ans, qui était un pilier de la famille.” — Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec

( Image credit : Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec )


“Another hate crime that needs attention.

“My prayers are with the city of London, Ontario, after reading about the family who have been massacred by a terrorist (yup I said it) drove his car into them with just 1 of the 5 surviving, and that being a 9 year old.

“Imagine waking up to being the only member of your family…

“Many of my good friends are Muslim and often we end up having conversations about hateful racial experiences against us.

“As a Sikh and simply looking different to the norm, I can relate to their many Islamophobia hate crimes and confide in their hurtful experiences.

“We can’t pretend this does not exist.

“It’s absolutely devastating to read stories like this.

“We must stand united against Islamophobia and all forms of hatred.

“I stand in solidarity with our Muslim brothers and sisters who are going through similar scenarios and mourning this loss to their respective community.

“I am deeply sorry.

“It’s being reported that the family’s last moments were trying to save each other from the oncoming truck by getting in the way of one another so that the truck hits them first in an attempt to slow the impact…

“Imagine.” — Amandeep Singh, Tuesday June 8 2021

( Artist : Amandeep Singh / Inkquisitive )


“This mural was made by 15 year old Yumna Afzaal.

“Her star was stolen by hate but the spirit of her inspiring words cannot be denied.

“It should be shared & never forgotten.

“This is what every Canadian should aspire to. #OurLondonFamily ” — Abdu Sharkawy, Tuesday June 8 2021

( Photograph : Abdu Sharkawy )


“Watching the Vigil at the London Muslim Mosque this evening, left me saddened and heartbroken at this senseless terrorist attack.

“It is up to all non-Muslim people to come together to eradicate anti-Muslim hate.

“It has no place in our communities.

“We must hold each other accountable.

“What has happened and what is happening in this country, in this province is unacceptable.

“Recent attacks on Black Muslim women in Alberta, need to come to an end.

“We must all work together to put an end to anti-Muslim hate in our province. #OurLondonFamily” — Rachel Notley, Leader of Alberta’s New Democratic Party, Tuesday June 8 2021

( Photo credit : Rachel Notley )


Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay.

The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday June 9 2021.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Graeme MacKay )


“Like many Canadian Muslims, I couldn’t sleep much last night after a terror attack in London, Ontario killed a Muslim family out for a walk.

“This was the cover of the Journal de Montréal – where a terror attack on our soil doesn’t make the news.

“I think it’s painful to see because as someone that reads the JDM often, and the wildly xenophobic content often reproduced in its columns, it says something about how the arrogance of those in many parts of this country when it comes to the complete erasure of our pain.

“But our pain will not be erased.

“Our path forward – of justice, of love, and of light, will not be erased.” — Mustafa Farooq, Tuesday June 8 2021

( Photo credit : Mustafa Farooq )


« Quand mon amie Ruba m’a invité à la vigile en mémoire des victimes de l’attentat de London, je ne savais pas que je devrais à y prendre la parole.

» Tout juste débarqué de Québec, j’ai été surpris quand l’organisateur m’y a invité.

» J’ai décidé de parler avec mon cœur, j’ai dit à la foule endeuillée ce que m’inspirait ce moment de recueillement et de solidarité.

»Dans le deuil, dans la tragédie, les mots importent.

» Ce qui s’est passé à London n’est pas un crime comme les autres.

» C’est un crime inspiré par une idéologie politique.

» Cette idéologie, c’est le racisme, c’est l’islamophobie.

» Et quand un crime est motivé par une idéologie politique, ce crime porte un nom : c’est un attentat terroriste.

» C’est une vérité dure à entendre, mais il faut la dire.

» Pour régler les problèmes, il faut les nommer.

» Pour chasser les démons de nos esprits, de nos cœurs et nos sociétés, il faut les nommer.

» Même les plus effrayants.

» Le racisme systémique existe, mais ce n’est pas une fatalité.

» Un remède existe, c’est l’égalité.

» L’égalité, ce n’est pas seulement une idée, c’est une bataille.

» Il faut prendre le temps de pleurer les morts et de panser les blessures, mais il ne faut pas arrêter de lutter.

» Malgré la douleur, je sais que nous sommes capables, ensemble, de construire un Québec d’égalité.

» Ce ne sera pas facile, mais c’est nécessaire.

» Nous serons avec vous, à chaque moment.

» Et je sais qu’un jour nous gagnerons.

» Solidarité avec les victimes. #NotreFamilleDeLondon » — Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, Montréal, Vendredi 11 juin 2021

( Photo credit : Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois )


Islamic Cemetery of London where four members of the Afzaal Family were buried on Saturday June 12 2021.

( Photo credit : Brent Lale / CTV News )


“Visited the memorial one last time before driving back to Toronto.

“For the first time, not as a reporter.

“Just as a person who’s shattered over this senseless loss.

“My heart goes out to you, Salman, Madiha, Yumna and Talat.” — Kamil Karamali

“… Of course, and young Fayez too.” — Kamil Karamali, Sunday June 13 2021

“The memorial site has turned from an intersection to a strong message for the local community & Canada that even though hate & Islamophobia lives amongst us, there is far greater form of love and commitment to fight it lives within us in far greater numbers.❤️ #OurLondonFamily” — Maj Siddiqui

( Photo credit : Kamil Karamali )


“Babe…what do we tell the kids?”

“Do we tell them that there are some people out there who hate us because we love Allah?

“Or because we love the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)?

“Do we tell them that there are some people out there who hate us because our names are Arabic?

“Or because we speak another language?

“Do we tell them that there are some people out there who hate us because of our pink and purple hijabs or dark green kufis?

“Do we tell them that there are some people out there who hate us because our skin color is brown?

“Or because we wear traditional Pakistani clothing?

“Do we tell them that there are some people out there who hate our existence so much that they killed our brother and sisters just an hour away from us?

“Guys, we are going to a vigil. A really nice family is with Allah now. So we are going to pray for them.”

“Are we going to see Allah?”

“Not today”

✨Surely we belong to Allah, and to Him we shall return ✨

“To my Muslim community – I know you’re not ok.

“I am not okay.

“Allah is our Provider and our Guide.

“Lean on Him 🙏🏾♥️ Trust in His plan.

“Nothing happens outside of His command.

“Don’t rely on politicians or people to give you comfort / rely on Allah.” — Sudduf Wyne, Saturday June 12 2021

( Photo credit : Salam Sudduf )


“I wanted to share this powerful piece of art honouring #OurLondonFamily by Kavita D — The names included are of the Conservative Party of Canada and Liberal Party of Canada MPs who voted for the deeply Islamophobic Zero Tolerance for Barbaric Cultural Practices Act in June 2015.” — Beisan Zubi, Thursday June 17 2021

“Anti-Muslim hate is not only widespread in Canada, it’s built into our legal system and our politics.

“Politicians have used Muslim-Canadians both to fear-monger and gain sympathy depending on what was most political expedient.

“In this piece, I’ve reference 3 recent examples of this.

“Included are the names of politicians who voted in favour of a federal bill condemning “barbaric cultural practices”, against a federal motion to denounce Islamophobia, and for passing a provincial law that bans Quebec’s civil servants from wearing religious items.

“See the names of the people who made this country less safe for Muslim families like the Afzaal-Salman family.” — Kavita K.D., Tuesday June 15 2021

( Visual Artist : Kavita K.D. / joy of kiki )



“Needless to say the whole month of June has been a roller coaster of tragedies Canada wide, Ontario-wide and right in the heart of my home of London.

“I have spent this month filled with emotion and in reflection on how I can be an ally and how I can use my talents to voice inclining societal issues especially Islamophobia.

“Here I painted,

“Salman Afzaal (46), father, physiotherapist and cricket enthusiast;

“Madiha Salman (44) a loving mother and who was working on her doctorate in civil engineering at Western University;

“Yumnah Salman, their daughter, a finishing ninth grade student at Oakridge High School and inspiring artist who painted a mural saying “shoot for the stars, even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”

“Finally, Talat Afzaal (74) the grandmother and “pillar” of the Afzaal family.

“We can not afford to lose innocent lives to hate, we can not live in a world of terror.

“We must do our part in every break the walls of Islamophobia and to support those who need it most in troubling times.

“Please do your part in resharing this post and reflect on way you can also be an ally in these troubling times.” — Bridget Koza, Monday June 21 2021

( Artist : Bridget Koza )


“The killing of 58-year-old volunteer, Mohamed-Aslim Zafis, at the IMO Mosque in Etobicoke last year, was remembered in a series of nationwide news conferences presenting dozens of action points to fight Islamophobia.” — Mark Douglas, Monday July 19 2021

“Heartbreaking op-ed from Omar Farouk, president of the IMO Mosque in Toronto, after recalling the tragic attack on #OurLondonFamily, the murder of Brother Mohamed Aslim-Zafis outside of his Toronto Mosque, as well as the Quebec City Mosque massacre.” — NCCM, Monday June 21 2021

“Hate shattered the once peaceful veneer of London, Ontario with the murder of four members of the Afzaal family on June 6.

This has inflicted wounds so deep they’re likely to leave permanent scars that will haunt our collective memory for years to come.

Nine months after the murder of Mohamed Aslim-Zafis at the entrance of the International Muslim Organization (IMO) mosque on Rexdale Boulevard in Toronto, a day does not go by without me recalling the shocking scene.

The images seared into my memory are of flashing lights of paramedics and police vehicles, “do not cross” police tapes, the lifeless body of Aslim-Zafis covered with a tarp, and our Imam sobbing and supplicating to God.

After offering the evening prayer, Aslim-Zafis would usually sit outside with a cup of tea during the warm summer evenings.

Images captured on CCTV cameras show that he did not see his assailant, who viciously attacked him when he least expected it.

Our mosque, like any other in the GTA, welcomes people from all ethnicities.

A white male would raise absolutely no suspicion in the minds of anyone.

Instead of an interrogation, a total stranger is more likely to receive a plate of whatever fixing Aslim-Zafis had cooked up in our kitchen.

As the president of the mosque, I felt alone, weak and vulnerable.

How did the Islamic Cultural Centre president in Quebec City feel when he received news that someone had killed six members inside his mosque?

The first person at my side was Mustafa Farooq, CEO of the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM).

He and his small team helped us chart a course forward.

We at IMO have always had an exceptional relationship with Toronto police officers at 23 Division.

Supt. Ron Taverner reassured me that officers would be posted at the mosque around the clock until the killer is in custody.

A few days later, Toronto police arrested [the killer] and charged him with murder.

The Canadian Anti-Hate Network said that [the killer]’s social media profile showed that he had ties to a group that was ideologically motivated to violent extremism.

I am still baffled that he has not been charged with a hate crime.

However, his apparent ideological motivation for the murder of Aslim-Zafis provided us with a critical perspective.

Standing with us with their pledged support to fight Islamophobia are elected officials from all levels of government, GTA Imams, faith leaders from far and near — Jewish, Christian, Hindu, and Sikh.

The extensive media coverage assigned to the massacre of the Afzaals is appreciated.

The outpouring of empathy from fellow Canadians of every strata, creed and ethnicity warmed my very being.

I am hopeful that this will inspire a national conversation and a concrete plan of action to stem the spread of ideologically motivated violent extremism in Canada.

I am also now convinced that were we as Canadians to stand as a unified bulwark against the architects of hate, it will eliminate their foothold in our society and leave little or no room for them to traffic their vile ideology online.

The arrest of two persons after an attempt to enter the Islamic Institute of Toronto (IIT) earlier this week emphasizes the necessity and urgency for this to take place imminently.”

Omar Farouk, President and CEO of the International Muslim Organization mosque in Etobicoke, Friday June 18 2021

( Video credit : Mark Douglas, Monday July 19 2021 )


“This is Jen and today I finally got a chance to meet this beautiful woman in person.

“Jen was one of the first people at the scene when the Afzaal and Salman family was attacked in June.

“She didn’t know the family and didn’t have to stop and help but she did MashaAllah.

“Even though it was incredibly traumatic, Jen believes she was there for a reason and so do I.

“Madiha’s brother called her “Our London hero” recently and even though she doesn’t call herself that, I definitely agree.

“Jen did everything she could on the scene and stayed with Fayez and comforted him when he needed it most.

“She reached out to me soon after the attack after seeing me post about the attack and my sketchbook drawing where I wrote “sometimes it’s okay to not be okay.

“Jen asked if she could get a copy of that work so I had a print made for her and framed it as a (very) small thank you for being there not only for the family but for all many Muslims in London over the last few months.

“Jen and her family are still in touch with the Salman family and they’re also learning more about Islam and doing whatever they can to challenge hate and Islamophobia.

“I’m so grateful to have finally gotten a chance to meet you Jen and pray that some good can come out of the horrific tragedy that brought us and so many others together ♥️

“Ameen.” — Aruba M, Tuesday September 21 2021

( Diptych photographs : Art by Aruba )


“No woman should have to fear walking down the street wearing her hijab for fear of being attacked or having it ripped off of her head.

“No one should come to prayer services at the Masjid to have to look over their shoulder and worry who might be coming in the door as they as they worship.

“That shouldn’t be happening.” — Andrea Horwath

Ontario New Democratic Party Leader Andrea Horwath joined leaders from the London Muslim Mosque and National Council of Canadian Muslims for the Our London Family Act Press Conference inside the Masjid’s main prayer hall on Saturday January 29 2022.

The Our London Family Act is meant to address Islamophobia through changes to the education system, enhancements to the province’s anti-racism directorate and increasing the timeframe people have to file human rights complaints.

The bill also calls for increased hiring of minorities in the provincial public service and more accountability on hate crime reporting and prosecution in Ontario.

( Photo credit : CTV London )


“Last summer, our country was shaken when Our London Family was murdered in a cowardly Islamophobic hate crime while out on an evening stroll in London, Ontario.

“Just months before, 15-year-old Yumna Afzaal completed this mural at the London Islamic School.

“She worked on it every day, despite the pandemic.

“Today I’m thankful I was able to return to London Muslim Mosque to be with the community and see this mural again.

“It is a testament to an exceptional young woman whose art will survive the violence that took her life.

“Her legacy lives on in the fight against hate.

“In Yumna’s words — learn, lead, inspire.” — Andrea Horwath

( Photo credit : CTV London )


The London Remembers Panel, London Muslim Mosque :

“Islamophobia must be stopped.

“Let today and every day be a reminder that there is no place for Islamophobia – hate against Muslim – in Canada!

“This is our country, just as much as it is your country.

“The Charter of Rights and Freedoms gives us the Right to follow any religion we chose, freely, without fear of hate or being killed because of it what we choose to follow.

“Call your MPP today and ask them to pass Our London Family Act NOW!” — Saimah Sa

( Photo credit : Saimah Sa / London Muslim Mosque )


“Today I joined Nawaz Tahir & Mustafa Farooq to pay respect to the lives lost in the Quebec City mosque attack five years ago, and to again express the Ontario Liberal Party’s support for the Our London Family Act.

“We must take action against Islamophobia.” — Steven Del Duca

“Thank you Steven Del Duca for your support and non partisan leadership in supporting the Our London Family Act.

“I appreciate you taking time with us today.” — Nawaz Tahir

( Photo credit : Steven Del Duca )


“Kudos to London Free Press for handing over the entirety of today’s [Saturday June 12 2021] editorial and opinion space to women from the local Muslim community.

These are the voices crowded out by politicians at this week’s vigil.” — Larry Cornies, London, Ontario

( Photo credit : London Free Press Front Page, above the fold )


“This January 29th, Canada as a country will mark the federally designated National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“The green square I am wearing represents the green carpets of the Quebec City mosque, where the victims last stood to pray.

“I invite everyone in the Scarborough Southwest community and Canadians across the country to wear a green square to stand against Islamophobia and hate, and for a better future for all Canadians.

“We will continue to work with the Scarborough Southwest community to bring forward a real plan to take on Islamophobia and white supremacy through legislation, called the Our London Family Act.

“We must commit to taking real action in Ontario against Islamophobia & hate.” — Doly Begum, Member of Provincial Parliament, Scarborough, Ontario

( Photo credit : Doly Begum )


“On National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia, I wear a Green Square to remember the worshippers who were either injured or died in their place of worship because of their faith.” — Commissioner Gary Pieters, Ontario Human Rights Commission

The Ontario Human Rights Commission defines Islamophobia as :

“Stereotypes, bias, or acts of hostility towards individual Muslims or followers of Islam in general.”

( Photo credit: Gary Pieters )


“Thanks to all who braved the cold and helped us drop flyers in Forest Hill.

“Our team was proud to don green squares in memory of the Quebec City Mosque Massacre of 2017.

“Islamophobia kills, and it has no place in Canada or anywhere.” — Nathan Stall, Toronto, Ontario

( Photo credit : Nathan Stall )


Anti-Islamophobia Series: In Remembrance of the Quebec Mosque Shooting

To mark the five-year anniversary of the Quebec mosque shooting, Noor Cultural Centre in Toronto assembled and livestreamed three panels leading up to January 29 2022.

Islamophobia Across Borders: Anti-Muslim Racism in Canada and the United States” was their third and final panel livestreamed on Saturday afternoon.

The speakers were:

Leila Bdeir (Vanier College, Montreal): anti-racist and feminist scholar-activist

Dr. Maha Hilal (Justice for Muslims Collective, DC): anti-racism researcher, writer, and organizer

Dr. Tarek Younis (Middlesex University, London, UK): cultural and critical clinical psychologist

Moderated by Azeezah Kanji (Noor Cultural Centre, Toronto): legal academic and journalist

They analyzed continuities, contrasts, and collaborations in anti-Muslim racism between Canada and the US.

They explored relationships of solidarity being built across borders, and between different struggles for anti-racist and anti-colonial justice.

( Photo credit : Noor Cultural Centre )


“☪️ 🕯️ Join us in commemorating the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia by discovering this sampling of films that lift the voices of Canadians of Muslim faith & address Islamophobia in our society → ” — National Film Board of Canada

“Today marks the first National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia, and the five year anniversary since an act of terror took the lives of six people at the Grand Mosque in Quebec City, and seriously injured 19 others.

“We remember and honour the lives of Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzedine Soufiane, Aboubaker Thabtia.

“Today and every day we must promote action against Islamophobia, and reaffirm our collective commitment to denounce hate, discrimination, and violence in all forms.

“For anyone wanting to learn more, The National Film Board has curated a playlist of films that lift the voices of Canadians of Muslim faith and address Islamophobia in our society.

“Watch now: ” — Kristyn Wong-Tam, Toronto City Councillor

( Image credit : National Film Board of Canada )


“Today, on the Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia, we join with the Muslim community to honour the victims of the 2017 Quebec City mosque shooting.” — City of Vancouver

( Video credit : City of Vancouver )


“Honoured guests, respected friends, dignitaries, elders, I just wanted to welcome you to the traditional, ancestral, unceded lands of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples.

“I’m coming to you from my home community of Musqueam this morning, the hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓ speaking people.

“Musqueam wishes to share this morning that we stand in support and remembrance with the Muslim community.

“Today we remember the six victims of the Quebec City mosque shooting who died five years ago, and the five other Canadian Muslims who’ve been killed since then because of Islamophobia.

“In our culture an important teaching is that we’re all connected, we’re all one, nə́c̓aʔmat ct, We Are One, and we must take care of each other to come together and hold one another up, even when we disagree, we set aside our differences and we work together for the betterment of all.

“For me this means everyone has a responsibility to uplift and support all communities in their mission to end hate, discrimination and systemic racism.

“To truly end Islamophobia and all forms of violence based in fear, we need to work together in the spirit of collaboration and coexistence.

“Events like today’s are important to have meaningful dialogue, but I urge everyone especially the politicians attending to reflect on how they are standing up for marginalized communities and what they will do differently after attending today.

“Just going back to the prayer, the words that opened up the event, I heard Muhammad speak to, saying there’s no fear, there’s no grief for those who are lost because they’re okay where they are now, there’s joy, the joy is not denied.

“In our culture I mean we also believe that, we’re here in this world for a short time and when we move on to the next, we’re all okay, we’re in a good place.

“So I hope that gives some comfort to the families of those who’ve lost loved ones because of Islamophobia.”

Land Acknowledgement and opening remarks by Councillor Rosalind Campbell of the Musqueam Indian Band.

Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia, an online event organized in British Columbia.

( Photo credit : Foundation for a Path Forward )


“C’est le 5e anniversaire de l’attentat de la mosquée de Québec.

“Chaque carré vert porté lors de la #CampagneCarréVert🟩 a pour but de rappeler les 6 vies qui ont été prises.

Ibrahima Barry
Mamadou Tanou Barry
Khaled Belkacemi
Aboubaker Thabti
Abdelkrim Hassane
Azzedine Soufiane

“Ils étaient nos amis & voisins, des êtres chers & des musulmans.

“Ces attaques ébranlent les Canadiens, en particulier ceux des communautés minoritaires.

“Elles démontrent que l’islamophobie, le néonazisme, la suprématie blanche, l’homophobie & l’antisémitisme sont des menaces pour nous.

“Nous devons travailler ensemble pour repousser cette haine qui cherche à nous diviser.

“En tant que Canadiens, nous devons montrer qu’il n’y a pas de licence sociale pour la haine.

“Que l’islamophobie n’a pas sa place dans la société.” — Harjit Sajjan, Federal Minister and Member of Parliament for Vancouver South

Foundation for a Path Forward hosted this community safety & wellness event to promote Islamophobia Awareness & Allyship.

( Photo credit : Harjit Sajjan )


After the Quebec City Mosque Shooting on Sunday January 29 2017, Google Canada added a Black Ribbon to their search engine homepage.

Hovering your mouse pointer over the Black Ribbon would reveal alt text which read :

“Our hearts are with the people of Quebec City”

This image of Google Canada’s search engine homepage was captured on Tuesday January 31 2017.

( Image credit : Sanjib Dutta )


“C’est la Journée nationale de commémoration de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec et d’action contre l’islamophobie.

“Rendons hommage aux victimes de cet incident tragique et à leur famille.

“Aidons à éradiquer l’islamophobie, la haine et le racisme au pays #CampagneCarreVert🟩” — Google Canada

Working with the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM), on Saturday January 29 2022, Google Canada added a #greensquare🟩 on their search engine homepage and linked it to information about the National Day of Action against Islamophobia.

( Photo Credit : NCCM & Google Canada )


Le lien comme le carré vert renvoient à une page de résultats pour la requête suivante « Journée nationale en souvenir de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec et contre l’islamophobie ».

( Screencapture credit : Al-Kanz )


“A l’occasion, Google affiche un message sur sa page d’accueil.

“Aujourd’hui, 29 janvier 2022, Google Canada a ajouté un carré vert 🟩 avec un hyperlien vers la recherche [Journée nationale en souvenir de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec et contre l’islamophobie].” — Marc Duval, Bibliothécaire professionnel, Boucherville, Québec

( Screencapture credit : Marc Duval )


“🟩 Thank you to Google Canada for working with National Council of Canadian Muslims to bring the #greensquarecampaign to everyone. 🟩

“This is a valuable and important step in raising awareness about issues of hate and Islamophobia.

“Thank you Google for your leadership on this.

“Today we honour and pray for the 6 men who were killed in an act of hate, on January 29 2017 at the CCIQ Mosque in Quebec, and all of those impacted by this act of violence.”

Dr. Fariha Khan, Toronto, Ontario

( Video credit : Dr. Fariha Khan )


“January 29th has been recognized as the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Our students learned about the Green Square Campaign, learned about celebrating our diversities and standing up to hate and intolerance.” — Parkdale School, St.Laurent, Quebec

( Photo credit : Parkdale School, English Montreal School Board )


“Today, all Canadians are wearing and should wear the green square in honour of the 6 victims who lost their lives in a terrorist attack on the Quebec City Mosque Shooting 5 years ago today we remember the victims and continue to stand up for rights and stand against Islamophobia.” — Mubashir Ekram, Grade 10 Student at Brampton Centennial Secondary School

( Photo credit : Mubashir Ekram )


“En cette journée nationale de commémoration de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec et d’action contre l’islamophobie

“Je me souviens 29 janvier 2017

“rendons hommage à ceux qui ont été abattus il y a 5 ans et aux survivants.

“Luttons contre la haine sous toutes ses formes.” — Peter Julian, Member of Parliament

( Photo credit : Peter Julian )


“Not at home in Canada right now but my heart is.

“On this date in 2017, a gunman walked into a Quebec mosque and took the lives of worshipers at prayer.

“He was motivated by the Islamophobia that festers online, that he engaged with, that he was enraged by.

“January 29 is a National Day of Remembrance and a reminder to take action against islamophobia.

“Join the green square campaign and commit to taking a stand when you encounter hate of any kind, to ensure a better, more compassionate world insha’Allah. 🟩” — S. K. Ali, Canadian Author

( Photo credit : S. K. Ali / Sajidah )


“I wear a green square symbolizing the carpet of the Quebec City mosque where the martyrs in Quebec last stood to pray.

“On January 29, 2017, a gunman burst into a mosque and took the lives of six men, orphaned 17 children, and injured many others.

“I remember the devastation of that day—feeling the intense shock and grief that something like this could happen so close to home.

“At the time, I so wanted to say and believe “This isn’t our Canada!”

“But the reality is bigotry and racism are ingrained in much of our country’s history and policies.

“People of colour lose their lives and their livelihoods every day because of this.

“I will continue to work hard to battle Islamophobic narratives in my writing, and to teach our generation’s children the inherent value each one of us holds in the sight of God, regardless of colour or nationality.

“May Allah have mercy on Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Abdelkrim Hassane, and Azzedine Soufiane.” — Asmaa Hussein, Publisher

( Photo credit : Ruqayah’s Bookshelf )


“Today we remember the Quebec City mosque attack.

“The first Eid after the attack I wondered if something similar would happen at my local mosque ?

“This is a sad and unacceptable reality for many Muslims.

“No one should have to live in fear of Islamophobic violence.” — Farheen Alim, High School Teacher

( Photo credit : Farheen Alim )


“Today, on January 29th, Canada marks the federally designated National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“It was just five years ago when a gunman entered a place of worship in the middle of prayer and opened fire on Muslim worshippers, killing six, and injuring many more members of the congregation.

“This Green Square symbolizes the green carpet of the mosque where the victims last stood to pray.

“I am wearing the Green Square today to remember the victims and survivors of the Quebec City Mosque Attack, and as a commitment to stand against Islamophobia in all its forms.

“I wear it because I feel hopeful Canada will be a safer place for Muslims and people of all backgrounds.

“I invite you to join me and Canadians across the country to wear a green square to stand against Islamophobia, and resolve to build a foundation for change by promoting a more inclusive country for everyone.” — Jyoti Gondek, Mayor of Calgary, Alberta

( Photo credit : Jyoti Gondek )


“More important than changing a social media image to a #GreenSquare🟩 (but it can help) is getting educated and using our White Privilege to interrupt and end Islamophobia.

“Thank you Canadian Council of Muslim Women for providing Dare To Be Aware training!” — Deirdre Pike, Hamilton, Ontario

( Photo credit : Deirdre Pike )


“Inna lillahi wa Inna lillahi rajioon 🤲🏿

“We wear a green patch, the same color as the carpet soaked in the blood of the innocent parishioners this horrific day,

“5 years since the Quebec mosque terrorist attack killing 6 and hospitalizating 5.

“Today is also National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Although I am seeing many of us addressing it as such, less we forget that at the time it was not handled that way in the courts or the media for that matter until much later.

“The culprit was NEVER charged with terrorism.

“We say the names of the innocent victims and pray that God forgives them of any of their shortcomings and grants them Jannatul Firdaws (highest place in heaven)

“Mamadou Tanou Barry, 42; Abdelkrim Hassane, 41; Khaled Belkacemi, 60; Aboubaker Thabti, 44; Azzeddine Soufiane, 57; and Ibrahima Barry, 39.

“who were innocently worshiping at the Masjid…

“May Allah have his Mercy in their souls. Ameen🤲🏿” — Mark Strong

( Photo credit : Mark Strong )


L’Imam de la Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec (CCIQ) Mosquée, Sheikh Mohamed Fouad, a chanté des versets du Coran lors de la cérémonie.

( Photo credit: Muriel Leclere / Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec )


« C’est trop facile de ne voir en l’autre que sa différence.

De ne voir en lui ou elle qu’une différence.

Agir ainsi, c’est s’exposer soi-même au jugement de l’autre.

Nous sommes tous différents aux yeux de quelqu’un d’autre.

Nous sommes tous le nouvel arrivant de quelqu’un arrivé avant nous.

Au jeu de la différence, nous y perdons tous. »

“En ce 29 janvier, souvenons-nous.” — Bruno Marchand, le maire de Québec

( Photo credit : Émilie Nadeau )


Une cérémonie s’est déroulée samedi sur les lieux du drame, au Centre culturel islamique de Québec.

Des rescapés et des membres de la classe politique ont pris la parole pour rendre hommage aux disparus.

Dans leur discours, le ministre fédéral de la santé, Jean-Yves Duclos, le maire de Québec, Bruno Marchand, et le premier ministre, François Legault, ont tous les trois insisté sur l’importance du vivre-ensemble.

( Photo credit : Radio-Canada )


5th Commemoration of the Québec City Mosque Shooting, held in Québec City, outside the mosque in Sainte-Foy, a suburban borough of the provincial capital, was largely virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the general public encouraged to watch the commemoration online.

Evening Ceremony at the Québec City Islamic Cultural Centre was one of several that took place across Canada to honour the sombre 5th anniversary, as well as the first National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia, which was proclaimed in April 2021.

Speakers included: Premier Francois Legault; Quebec City Mayor Bruno Marchand; federal Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos, who represents Quebec City in Parliament; and Ghislain Picard, the Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador spoke at the event.

( Photo credit: Commémoration Citoyenne )


“Five years ago, the Muslim community of Quebec naturally turned to the First Nations for their listening and their solidarity.” — Ghislain Picard, Chief of the Assembly of First Nations Quebec-Labrador

( Photo credit: Muriel Leclere / Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec )


Among those who spoke at the commemoration in Sainte-Foy was Nusaiba Al-Azem, the vice-chair of the London Muslim Mosque in London, Ontario.

On June 6 2021, four members of a Muslim family were killed in London while taking a walk. Police have said they believe the family members were targeted because of their faith, and the man accused in the case is now facing murder and terrorism charges.

“Seven months ago, a family in my hometown took an evening stroll to escape the reality of COVID, only to confront the reality of Islamophobia,”

“Islamophobia doesn’t start with a man shooting at a mosque — it starts in the classroom, in the workplace, on the streets, at the dinner table and in the legislature,”

“A law regulating religious symbols impacts more than what people wear to work — it impacts belonging.”

Al-Azem said the commemorations are not for members of the Muslim community, because the Islamophobia is a daily reminder of the deadly attacks.

“We flinch when trucks speed by, we steel ourselves before walking into our places of worship, we feel unsafe in our own backyards, we brush off ignorant comment, after ignorant comment, after ignorant comment,”

“We are overlooked for work opportunities and promotions, and, in some places, we’re unable to earn a living while wearing a hijab, because the state allows it to be that way. We need no reminder, we are commemorating every day.”

( Photo credit: Commémoration Citoyenne )


M. Duclos a partagé quelques mots pour le premier ministre du Canada Justin Trudeau qui ne pouvait assister à la cérémonie après avoir été exposé à la COVID-19.

« On sait qu’il reste encore beaucoup de travail à faire. […] Parce qu’il y a encore du racisme, ici même à Québec. Parce qu’il y a encore des personnes musulmanes qui se sentent écartées dans notre société », a souligné M. Duclos en lisant le message de M. Trudeau.

“Tonight, with great emotion, we gathered to commemorate the 5th anniversary of the attack at the Quebec City Mosque. Our thoughts remain with the injured, and the loved ones of the six members of our community murdered because of hate.

“Thank you to everyone who took part in this event to remind us that we must continue to work together to fight against ignorance, fear and hatred, to build a society where everyone can live united and in peace.” — Federal Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos, who represents Quebec City in Parliament

( Photo credit : Jean-Yves Duclos )


“We remember those lost to gun violence.

“We recognize that Islamophobia is all too real.

“We must redouble our commitment to ending the violence and to ending the hate.” — Rachel Bendayan, Députée d’Outremont / Member of Parliament for Outremont

( Photo credit : Rachel Bendayan )


Seuls quelques membres des familles des victimes ainsi que des représentants des médias étaient admis sur place.

Cinq années se sont écoulées depuis l’attentat à la grande mosquée de Québec.

Pour les survivants et les proches des victimes, les souvenirs des événements du 29 janvier 2017 restent indélébiles.

( Photo credit : Radio-Canada )


“Depuis les cinq dernières années, de nombreuses personnes s’engagent bénévolement dans les commémorations de l’attentat du 29 janvier 2017 contre la Grande mosquée de Québec.

“En nous unissant à chaque année, nous honorons la vie des victimes et des survivant·e·s et nous poursuivons notre lutte collective contre l’islamophobie, le racisme et la haine sous toutes ses formes.

“Nous tenons à remercier toutes les personnes qui se sont impliquées à Québec, mais aussi partout au Québec et au Canada, dans les activités de solidarité du 29 janvier.

“Merci aussi aux centaines de personnes qui ont assisté à la commémoration en direct cette année et aux milliers qui l’ont vue depuis.

“C’est ensemble que nous exerçons notre devoir de mémoire.” — Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec

( Photo credit: Muriel Leclere / Commémoration citoyenne de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec )


“Go to the homepage and you’ll see a small green square with a pin at the bottom. Click on that. You’ll learn that today January 29 is the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia.

“On a day like today, I expect fellow Canadians to show support, solidarity & action.

“I expect you all to share & educate about the reality of anti-Muslim hate in Canada.

“I expect follow-through & real change by those in leadership positions.

“At minimum, I expect space to mourn.

“What I didn’t expect… was for a group of white supremacists to hijack this somber day for Muslim Canadians & to use it to bolster division & hate, distracting from important issues plaguing our communities, in a show of utter disrespect, arrogance & entitlement.

“As Muslims mourn & reflect using the #GreenSquare🟩 campaign, organizers of #ConvoyForFreedom2022 have taken it upon themselves to declare today “Freedom Day”.

“If only they realized the freedom Canadians truly need is freedom from hate, racism & fatal white supremacy…” — Ortho PA

“They’re talking about the freedom to be able to be irresponsible individuals and not be vaccinated and possibly spread COVID-19 around Canada.

“Meanwhile, our freedom has been deprived, our freedom to gather peacefully to remember victims of a brutal crime on a very sacred day.

“It is frustrating and it’s angering.” — Fareed Khan, Canadians United Against Hate

( Diptych credit : Ortho PA ; Ortho PA )


“There is a cruel irony this convoy organized by folks with far-right, xenophobic, and Islamophobic views is slated to end up in Ottawa on the fifth anniversary of the Quebec City mosque shooting.” — Sarah Mushtaq

“The fact that the fifth anniversary of the Quebec mosque shooting and the truckers’ convoy are happening on the same weekend is deeply unsettling and a little frightening.” — Fatima Syed

“Feeling rage at seeing the images of blatant racist symbols being used the day before the 5th anniversary of the Québec Mosque shooting, in the wake of continued uncovering of Indigenous children’s remains at Residential school sites & ongoing attacks on Black Muslim women in Alberta.” — Dr. Muna Saleh منى صالح

“On the eve of the Quebec mosque shooting anniversary, with calls to act against hate, we have Confederate flags in our nation’s capital.

“It’s a gut check for not only Muslim Canadians, but all Canadians.” — Ahmed Ali

“As hate descends on Ottawa, parading as patriotism, our country marks the solemn anniversary of the murder of six innocent people who dared to be Muslim.

“Hate has no place in Canada.” — Stacey L Newman

“Today is the fifth anniversary of the Quebec Mosque shooting.

“As Muslims (and others) continue to consider the impact of that attack, the truck convoy has taken national spotlight away from a conversation around Islamophobia happening in this country to focus on the unvaxxed.” — Ahmar Khan

“I know some will say “This isn’t Canada” but it’s hard to explain to some of us how on the same day 5 years later of the Quebec mosque shooting, there are organizers spouting Islamophobia with confederate flags and they are being greeted by elected officials with donuts/coffee.” — Andrew Baback Boozary MD

“Where do we go from here?

“White supremacists are protesting on Parliament Hill with confederate flags & swastika logos on the 5th anniversary of the Quebec city mosque massacre.

“It is a very sad weekend in Canada 💔” — Birgit Umaigba RN, MEd

“I cannot be the only person who has noticed that confederate flags are flying in Ottawa on the 5th anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque massacre.” — Dr. Doug Eyolfson

“Further to my previous post, on the 5th anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque massacre, Michael Cooper, the Conservative MP for St Albert, Alberta is on Parliament Hill in front of a Canadian flag with swastikas on it.

“This is really happening.” — Dr. Doug Eyolfson

“Today is literally the anniversary of the Quebec mosque shooting, a day when we should all be thinking about how to stop Islamophobia & hate.

“Instead, you’ve got Confederate flags.

“You’ve got Swastikas.

“You’ve got politicians literally supporting this on Parliament Hill.

“Shame!” — Naheed Dosani, Palliative Care Physician

“Don’t say ‘this is not my Canada.’

“Yes it’s a small number of goons, but the reprehensible actions plus symbols on display are just the tip of the spear.

“Racism is pervasive and systemic here, in our Canada.

“It’s dangerous and not reserved to these thugs. And it must be stamped out.

“What we’re seeing are the dangerous escalations of every dog whistle and unchecked racist action – of every time we’ve looked away.

“Elie Wiesel, Nobel Laureate and holocaust survivor said ‘The opposite of love is not hate, but indifference.’ Feels particularly poignant today.

“Days from Holocaust Remembrance Day and on the day of memorial for the victims of the Quebec mosque terrorist attack — the in-person vigil cancelled as a result — my heart is in my throat.

“It’s too much.

“I am so sorry to every person for whom this makes their trauma more raw.” — Carole Saab, CEO of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities

“As Mayors of the two cities that straddle Member of Parliament Michael Cooper’s riding, Edmonton Mayor Amarjeet Sohi and I are troubled by a photo of MP Cooper that is being circulated with an upside down Canadian flag with a hateful symbol of a swastika on it.

“This type of symbolism is never okay, but it is even more troubling as we just marked the anniversary of the Holocaust, and today, we remember the victims who lost their lives in the hate-based Quebec City Mosque attack five years ago.

“We want the rest of the country to know that MP Cooper’s presence at this rally in no way reflects the values of Edmontonians and St. Albertans.

“Our communities are diverse, inclusive and welcoming—hate has absolutely no place here.

“Along with us, many other people are hurt by his behaviour and lack of judgement, and we call upon him to apologize not only to his constituents but to the rest of the country as well.” — Mayor Cathy Heron, City of St. Albert, President of Alberta Municipalities

“I have bit my tongue on this for long enough.

“Unacceptable for elected officials to flirt with a movement with leaders who have straight up endorsed white supremacy.

“This is why folks had to cancel the vigil in Ottawa tonight regarding Quebec City Mosque shooting.

“We cannot be okay with this Canada.

“It is okay to think a policy is dumb or stupid.

“It is okay to critique such a policy or protest against it.

“What is happening now is not okay.

“I’m old enough to remember when the member in question went after my colleague in a parliamentary committee and tried to read the Christchurch manifesto into the record.

“I’m deeply disappointed that the member appears to have learned little from that debacle.” — Mustafa Farooq, CEO of the National Council of Canadian Muslims

“If someone says that planning this protest on the first National Day of Action Against Islamophobia ‘was just a coincidence,’ I’m going to ask how many coincidental red flags one single protest can manage to wave around before you consider that some of this took place exactly as planned.” — Toula Drimonis

“It’s pretty telling that on the first ever day that is nationally recognized, we should be thinking how to do better by our Muslim friends, family, & neighbours, we instead have a “movement”, almost exclusively white in colour, filled with ignoramuses and bigots, sucking up all the oxygen in the room.” — Zack Teitel

“It’s disheartening & weird to have the 5th anniversary of the Quebec City mosque shooting be commemorated on the same day (January 29) the media will be obsessing over an anti-mandate convoy in Ottawa, organized by people who associate with Islamophobia & far right conspiracy theories.” — Steven Zhou, Toronto

“Maybe the media can focus more on the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia and the fact that what we’re seeing on Parliament Hill today shows us just how much more work we have to do.” — Samantha Rogers, Montréal

( Photo credit : Dr. Doug Eyolfson )


“Today we remember the victims of the horrific shooting at the Quebec City mosque on January 29, 2017.

“This attack on our soil, on our people, was an act of terror and hate.


“I wear the Green Square in solidarity with Canada’s Muslim community and all Canadians as we honour those we lost and whose legacy reminds us of the need to combat Islamophobia in all its forms.” — Erin O’Toole, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada

“Yeah well this is disingenuous and hypocritical.

“The right wing white supremacist fringe making up the trucker convoy has led to a vigil for victims of the mosque killings to be cancelled.

“Hope you’re proud of supporting them.” — Mary Grace Kosta, Librarian

“The vigil planned in Ottawa last night to “honour those we lost” had to be cancelled because of the extremist demonstration that O’Toole endorsed.” — Matt Blair, Torontonian

( Photo credit : Erin O’Toole )


“Erin O’Toole’s political party voted against addressing systemic racism… voted against.

“That little green square isn’t even a token of intention, it’s a lie.” — Jason Mulligan

( Image credit : Jason Mulligan )


Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay.

The Hamilton Spectator – Thursday February 16 2017.

( Editorial Cartoonist : Graeme MacKay )


“The green square represents the carpet that had to be cut out because the blood couldn’t be washed away

Abdelkrim Hassane
Aboubaker Thabti
Azzeddine Soufiane
Ibrahima Barry
Khaled Belkacemi
Mamadou Tanou Barry

We remember you.” — Iqra Khalid

“We remember you, and we will continue fighting against Islamophobia and all forms of hate in Canada.” — Iqra Khalid, Member of Parliament

( Photo credit : Iqra Khalid )


“Please don’t let the truckers protest overshadow remembering the lives of the victims lost in the Quebec mosque attack.

“I’m wearing my green square for the #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 and support the London Family Act to end Islamophobia in Canada.

“Please give it a read online.” — Simal Iftikhar, Peterborough, Ontario

( Photo credit : Simal Iftikhar )


Imam Abd Alfatah Twakkal of London Muslim Mosque with Kevin George, Priest and Rector of St Aidan’s Church in London, Ontario :

“Hello, everyone.

“It’s Kevin here.

“I’m on the steps of the London Muslim Mosque with my good friend Imam Abd Alfatah Twakkal.

“This is the five year anniversary of the shooting in Ste. Foy, Quebec, and this is a National Day of Remembrance.

“And it’s important today as much as any day, that we remind people of our unity, of our willingness to be together, to stand against violence, hatred, Islamophobia in all of its forms.

“And so I’m just back on the steps where we were five years ago tomorrow, after the day of shooting, with my good friend and just wanted to reminisce a little bit about that day and how you’re feeling today.”

Imam Abd Alfatah Twakkal :

“I remember that day, Kevin, like it was yesterday and the efforts that you put in to bring people together with the same message that we will not tolerate any form of hatred or discrimination or Islamophobia within our community.

“And that was something that resonates to me until this day.

“And I hope it continues to resonate as we all stand together and act collectively against all forms of Islamophobia and hatred.”

Kevin George :


“I just want to say a word to all of the folks in Ottawa today.

“There’s a lot of people in the Muslim community in Ottawa today who were going to be gathering for an in-person celebration who have had to put that aside for security concerns.

“This is not a conversation we should be having five years later.

“And so our prayers are with all the people in our capital city who are concerned today that they be held in safety as they remember the importance of this day as well.”

Imam Abd Alfatah Twakkal :

“I hope that everyone understands the importance of this day, this national day of remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia and that we continue to work together, stand together, and heal from these wounds that have been inflicted on our community and continue to be inflicted on our community.

“The only way that we can stop this is together.

“So thank you…”

Kevin George :

“Thank you, Asalam Alaykum.”

( Photo credit : Kevin George )


Fareed Khan, founder of Canadians United Against Hate, speaking with CityNews Montreal on Friday Afternoon January 28 2022 :

“We were just advised only a short while ago by city hall that all of the buildings around city hall, and the adjacent spaces, will be locked down, which means that we can no longer hold a live event, tomorrow.

“So, we’re quickly trying to pivot to a virtual event.”

Representatives of the Christian and Jewish communities were set to join with Canadian Muslims at Ottawa’s only in-person ceremony.

“This convoy is sucking the air out of every conversation, and literally forcing the Ottawa vigil to be cancelled because of security concerns.

“So much privilege and they don’t even know it.” — Sarah Mushtaq, Windsor, Ontario

“On the first National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia, Muslims and allies are denied space to grieve victims of the Quebec City mosque attack because of a convoy organized by white nationalists who can’t state a coherent goal.

“This does not feel like progress.” — Beyhan Farhadi PhD, Toronto, Ontario

“There was to be a march/memorial to take place in Quebec City today that had to move online because of security concerns with the farce taking place in Ottawa.

“Praying for my Muslim siblings today whose freedom to live peaceably seems to be always under threat.” — Kevin George, Priest + Rector of St Aidan’s Church, London, Ontario

“Today marks the 5th anniversary of the Quebec City mosque shooting and the first National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Muslim communities advocated for this day so we can have a conversation annually about the horrors of Islamophobia, and to remember the 6 lives we lost to it.

“But today, the first official year communities can gather to commemorate the day, Muslims in Ottawa have had to cancel public events because of their fear of those that have taken over the streets.

“We can’t even mourn as a community because there are people in the streets right now who may cause harm to us. My heart aches for any Muslim woman in hijab who has to be downtown today. Or Sikh man or woman who racists can’t differentiate from Muslims.

“The hope from so many of us when this day officially was announced was that it would ensure that we not forgot the 6 men who lost their lives to Islamophobia in Quebec City, or the Afzaal Family in London, and not add any more people to this list.

“It will be harder to have that conversation today when we see the disturbing images and commentary coming to light today but we must try to fight through the noise and not let anyone take this day from us.

“We remember, and we won’t let anyone intimidate us into forgetting.” — Ayesha Chughtai, Ottawa, Ontario

Planned Inter-Faith Candlelight Vigil in Centretown, Ottawa, to mark 5th Anniversary of Quebec Mosque Shooting was cancelled and re-organized as online virtual event with organizers citing safety concerns arising out of the presence of a convoy protesting vaccine mandates in Ottawa on Saturday.

Fareed Khan, founder of Canadians United Against Hate, said in an interview with CBC News on Saturday:

“With extremist voices attached to the protest and online chatter about possible violence, we started talking with police and city officials, and then early [Friday] morning we got a notice saying the venue we were going to use would be pretty much unavailable because of safety concerns,”

“…racist signs, the Confederate flag and other such paraphernalia which is connected to extremism and racism.”

“Certainly the solemnness of the event would have been totally ruined by hundreds or thousands of people making noise, truck horns honking,”

“Of course I didn’t want to, because it’s capitulating to extremist elements. But I wasn’t going to put people at risk of possible physical harm and possible health consequences,”

Originally meant to take place at the Human Rights Monument in downtown Ottawa, the event, organized by the group Canadians United Against Hate, said it had been expecting more than 100 people at the only in-person event in the National Capital region organized to remember the January 29 2017 attack, which left six people dead and 19 wounded.

( Image credit : Canadians United Against Hate! )


“J’ai rejoint les membres de ma communauté dans Ottawa-Centre pour commémorer virtuellement ceux qui ont perdu la vie dans l’attaque terroriste au Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec à Ste-Foy.

“Mes pensées vont aux familles+ aux proches des victimes de cette tragédie.” — Yasir Naqvi, Member of Parliament for Ottawa-Centre

The in-person vigil organized by Canadians United Against Hate to be held in front of the Human Rights Monument in Ottawa’s Centretown was cancelled due to safety concerns because of the convoy protesting vaccine mandates.

Ottawa’s cancelled Inter-Faith Candlelight Vigil was reorganized and held virtually.

( Photo credit : Yasir Naqvi )


“Le 29 janvier est la journée nationale de commémoration des victimes de l’attentat au Centre culturel islamique de Québec et de lutte contre l’islamophobie.

“Pour souligner cette journée, le bureau de KPMG Canada à Ottawa sera illuminé en vert en signe de support et d’unité.” — Mathieu Laberge


“It took away important coverage about it.

“White supremacy is about erasure.

“This convoy is a clear demonstration of it at work.” — Lorraine Lam

Protesters created safety concerns which erased tonight’s in-person Inter-Faith Candlelight Vigil from happening at the Human Rights Monument in Ottawa’s Centretown.

Aside from unsafe audible decibles of constant truck horns echoing throughout Centretown, safety concerns included the continuous yet intermittent firing of fireworks in random directions.

If any convoy protestors looking to see fireworks happened to look up at Performance Court at 150 Elgin Street, a block and a half north of the Human Rights Monument, they would see KPMG Canada’s three Ottawa office floors showing support and unity, by lighting up green against tonight’s night sky.

But sometimes people… Don’t Look Up.

( Photo credit : Mathieu Laberge )


Elsewhere in Canada’s Capital City of Ottawa, people peacefully passing by Octopus Books, a woman owned independent bookstore at 116 Third Avenue in The Glebe, would find this simple handmade acknowledgement and quiet Remembrance of January 29th in their bookshop window.

“Today is National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia.

“We remember the victims of the attack, Ibrahima Barry, 39; Mamadou Tanou Barry, 42; Khaled Belkacemi, 60; Aboubaker Thabti, 44; Abdelkrim Hassane, 41; and Azzedine Soufiane; 57.

“As well as the nineteen other worshippers who were injured, including Aymen Derbali, who was paralyzed in an attempt to stop the attack.🌹” — Octopus Books

( Photo credit : Octopus Bookstore )


“Tonight [Tuesday January 31 2017], the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill will be illuminated in green to honour the victims of the Quebec City mosque attack.” — George Furey, 45th Speaker of the Senate of Canada, Senator from Newfoundland and Labrador

“Parliament Hill in Ottawa lit green [Tuesday January 31 2017] in solidarity with Ste Foy Quebec City Mosque Shooting and Muslims across Canada” — Kazim Habib

On Tuesday evening January 31 2017, the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill in Ottawa was illuminated Green in honour of the shooting victims of the Quebec City Mosque Attack less than 48 hours before.

On Saturday January 29 2022, during the evening and night of the first federally designated National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack, it was not.

It could not.

It could not be lit green because of the congnitive dissonance of the loud honking convoy protest with any potential solemn or silent visual commemoration.

#January29 is supposed to be a day in the history of this land that reminds us to recommit to fighting hate and racism in all its forms.

“The spectacles of today just go to show that ⚪️ suprem*cy is alive and well and how much work there is to be done.” — Fatima Saleh, Treaty 6 Territory

“N*zi & Confederate flags on Parliament Hill 2 days after International Holocaust Remembrance Day & on the National Day of Remembrance & Action Against Islamophobia.

“I want to cry.” — Rachel Chertky

I say to make up for January 2022, we light up The Peace Tower on Parliament Hill in Yellow then Green over THREE NIGHTS in 2023 :

Friday January 27 2023 : Illuminate the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill Yellow for International Holocaust Remembrance Day;

Saturday January 28 2023 : Continue lighting the Peace Tower Yellow for the first part of the night, afterwards change lighting to Green for the second part of the night;

Sunday January 29 2023 : Illuminate the Peace Tower Green for the second federally designated National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack.

Colour Yellow to invoke the light of Yahrzeit Memorial Candles for the Yellow Candle Project;

Colour Green for the Green Square Campaign.

As balm to cure the memory of the cacaphony of convoy’s arrival in front of Parliament Hill on January 28 2022, we should gather by the Eternal Flame on Parliament Hill after sundown on Saturday January 28 2023, then walk as a group, in silence, the short distance to the Human Rights Monument on Elgin Street.

InshAllah we see this happen next year in Ottawa, January 2023.

The permitting process to see this happen must begin now, lest lesser voices begin formally annualizing the convoy protest first.

( Photo credit : Michel Boyer )


“Five years ago, a heinous attack rocked Québec City—an attack driven by hate. Six worshippers at the Islamic Cultural Centre were killed and 19 more were injured.

“The Muslim community—and all of Canada—mourned this terrible loss.

“Today, we remember the victims of the attack and those who lost loved ones.

“We also renew our commitment to taking action against Islamophobia and any form of hate.

“Prejudice has its roots in fear—fear of someone different, who holds different beliefs, speaks a different language, has a different dress or skin colour.

“But in our differences, in our diversity, we find our strength as a country.

Ajuinnata is a word in Inuktitut that means never giving up and committing ourselves to action.

“In this spirit, we can act together to build a better, more inclusive Canada for the next generation.

“And so, let us share stories to promote understanding and empathy.

“And let us always strive for a world where Islamophobia and all forms of discrimination are no longer part of our lived reality.” — Mary Simon, The Governor General of Canada

( Photo credit : Her Excellency the Right Honourable Mary Simon )


“Government House glowing green in recognition of National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia.

“January 29, 2017, 6 people were killed when a gunman entered the place of worship.

“#GreenSquareCampaign🟩 asks Canadians to wear a green square in memory of the victims.” — Judy Foote, Lieutenant Governor of Newfoundland and Labrador

For the first time, all three levels of government in Newfoundland lit their sites green to honour the victims and raise awareness of Islamophobia.

( Photo credit : Mohammad Ahmad / Muslim Association of Newfoundland and Labrador )


“Tonight January 29th, City Hall will be lit green for the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.” — City of St. John’s

( Photo credit : Mohammad Ahmad / Muslim Association of Newfoundland and Labrador )


Vehicle damaged in hate-motivated attack outside Edmonton, Alberta’s Al-Ameen Mosque on Saturday January 1 2022.

“The man allegedly punched and spat on the vehicle while uttering Islamophobic threats, then left the mosque and returned with a shovel.

“The attacker spat on the Muslim woman’s car window, punched the car numerous times with his fists, uttered a number of violent Islamophobic threats, and damaged Al-Ameen Mosque’s property.

“The attacker left the scene and returned with a shovel to continue his onslaught.

“The attack occured while the victim’s young children were in the car.” — National Council of Canadian Muslims

Police response was reportedly 30 minutes after the woman phoned 911.

This incident was one of around 10 hate-motivated attacks in the past 13 months.

On January 1 2022, police arrested a 34-year-old man who attacked a Somali woman and her children — aged four to 12 — as they waited in their car outside northeast Edmonton’s Al-Ameen mosque, where the children were attending a Qur’an class.

“They’re children, and they might be temporarily forgetting, but this is something they’re going to internalize for life and live with forever,

“It’s sad. What I heard is just so disturbing.” — Habiba Mohamud, Member of the Somali Community

“Why is this OK for our children, our sisters, to be attacked on the street?

“The community is silent. I know Edmontonians are great people, they’re caring, they stand up together. But on this issue, why are they silent?” — Mana Ali, social worker

“I’m also a Black Muslim sister, and I have a child, and it makes you fear for your safety,

“It could have been anyone who looks like her.” — Aisha Ali, Sisters’ Dialogue

“It’s not normal, in terms of how these attacks are rolling out,

“The targeted demographic population are Black Muslim women.

“Typically they’re visible Muslim women. Age is not a component, and whether they’re with children or not is not a component.

“This is serious, and if our government does not take this seriously, very soon somebody is going to die.” — Dunia Nur, President of the African-Canadian Civic Engagement Council

December 8 2020 : Two Somali women wearing hijabs were sitting in their vehicle in the parking lot of Edmonton’s Southgate Centre when a man smashed their window and assaulted them.

December 15 2020 : A 23-year-old Black woman had just entered the Southgate LRT Station in Edmonton when she was attacked by a stranger.

February 3 2021 : Two Muslim women wearing head coverings were assaulted in separate incidents, one at the University Transit Centre and the other near 100th Street and 82nd Avenue, Edmonton.

Edmonton’s Al-Rashid Mosque began offering Muslim women self-defence lessons following the attacks.

The classes are full.

( Photo credit : Edmonton Journal )


“National Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia

“Five years ago today, a senseless act of hatred took the lives of six people and injured 19 more who had gathered to worship in a Mosque in Québec.

“More recent, troubling attacks have continued to shake our country, reminding us that there is still work to be done to ensure that the home we share achieves its fullest promise as a peaceful, diverse and accepting place for all.

“Canada’s newly created National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia is an opportunity for each of us to consider how we can contribute to this essential work in our communities.

“I offer my heartfelt thanks to everyone who is committed to opening hearts, minds and doors, here in Alberta and across Canada.

“Every positive action makes an important difference, from community-wide education and awareness initiatives, to small gestures of kindness and understanding offered to neighbours of all faiths and ethnicities, each and every day.” — Her Honour, the Honourable Salma Lakhani AOE, B.Sc., LLD (Hon), Lieutenant Governor of Alberta

( Image credit : Lt. Governor Salma Lakhani )


“It has been 5 years since a gunman entered the Quebec City Mosque. Six Muslims lost their lives and others were injured.

“Today, we observe the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“I remember this dark day in our history.

“I was in Ottawa working as a federal minister, and I will never forget the despair, fear and trauma that my Muslim friends and colleagues were feeling.

“Canada would never be the same again.

“In honour of the memory of the victims, in recognition of those who selflessly and courageously put themselves in harm’s way to protect others, and in solidarity with the survivors, I am participating in NCCM’s Green Square campaign today.

“There is no place for Islamophobia or any other form of hate-based violence in Edmonton, in Canada, or anywhere.

“Our city has seen a rise in Islamophobic violence, especially against Black Muslim women, recently.

“We must come together to denounce these forms of oppression.

“The City of Edmonton High Level Bridge will be lit in green tonight as we mourn the victims and hold space for survivors.

“I will be continuing my outreach with the Edmonton Muslim community, and my heart is with those affected.

“We will never forget.” — Amarjeet Sohi, Mayor of Edmonton

( Photo credit : NCCM Alberta )


Southbound over the Bow River along the Centre Street Bridge, passing through Chinatown, looking towards Calgary Tower in the centre and Telus SKY building on the right while both are illuminated green.

( Photo credit : Lovejivan Sidhu )


Driving south on the Burrard Bridge above False Creek in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Historic Art Deco era Heritage Bridge Lamps were lit green for the night of Saturday January 29 2022.

( Video credit : British Columbia Muslim Association / Richmond Jamea Masjid )


“Ce soir, le Pont Samuel De Champlain est illuminé en vert!

“Ceci, pour commémorer les victimes de l’attentat de la mosquée de Québec, et nous rappeler que l’islamophobie doit toujours être affrontée.” — Sameer Zuberi, Member of Parliament for Pierrefonds-Dollard, L’île de Montréal

( Video credit : Katerine Roy )


“Montréal, Quebec, January 29, 2022 — Tonight, the Samuel De Champlain Bridge will cast its light on the Green Square Campaign of solidarity and hope, glowing green from sunset until 1 a.m.

“This campaign invites us to denounce the ignorance, racism, and Islamophobia at the root of the mosque attack in Quebec City five years ago and behind other hate crimes that have since occurred, notably in Toronto and London.

“In creating inclusive communities, we enable all Canadians to build and benefit from a just, resilient, and prosperous society.” — Infrastructure Canada

( Photo credit : Infrastructure Canada )


“The Samuel de Champlain bridge was illuminated in green on Saturday night to mark the first National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque attack and Action against Islamophobia.

“The colour green is symbolic because it supports the National Council of Canadian Muslims’ Green Square Campaign, encouraging Canadians to wear a fabric green square in solidarity with the victims of the mosque attack that left six men dead on January 29, 2017.

“The colour of the bridge represents the green carpets of the mosque where the victims last stood to pray.” — CityNews Montreal

( Photo credit : CityNews Montreal )


Montrealers of all faiths gathered in the minus-17 degree celsius frigid cold Saturday evening to mark the fifth anniversary of a shooting rampage at a Quebec City mosque that claimed the lives of six people and injured 19 others.

“Working together is the only way for us to build a strong society,” Ehab Lotayef, co-founder of Muslim Awareness Week, told the crowd.

“One community cannot do it alone. We have to have the will to do it together.”

( Photo credit : Dave Sidaway / Montreal Gazette )


Portraits of the Six Muslims who were killed five years ago, displayed at the Vigil in front of Metro Station du Parc Montréal.

( Photo credit : Ensemble Montréal )


Un moment de silence rend hommage aux hommes décédés, ainsi qu’aux personnes blessées et à tout le monde qui vit dans la peur en raison de la haine et de l’islamophobie.

( Photo credit : La Converse )


Montrealers held candles to mark the fifth anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque shootings.

( Photo credit : Dave Sidaway /Montreal Gazette )


People gathered in front of Metro Station du Parc Montréal, attending the vigil.

( Photo credit : Semaine de la sensibilisation Musulmane / Muslim Awareness Week )


Montrealers hold candles and listen to speakers during a commemorative ceremony held to mark the fifth anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque shootings.

( Photo credit : Peter McCabe )


Vigil in Montréal, Québec.

“Five years ago today, six innocent people were killed at the Quebec City mosque simply because they were Muslim.

“This was an act of terror, period. It was the inevitable consequence of Islamophobia and hatred.

“In the face of such tragedy, I’ve been moved by the solidarity shown by so many Quebecers and Canadians.

“Let’s continue to stand together, so we may prevail over those who seek to divide us.” — Sameer Zuberi, Member of Parliament for Pierrefonds-Dollard

( Photo credit : Shahad Salman )


“Il ya 5 ans, l’attentat de la Mosquée de Québec fauchait 6 vies et traumatisait la communauté musulmane. J’ai participé à la commémoration ce soir à Montréal de la tragédie à l’invitation de Samira Louani de La semaine de découverte des musulmans/Muslim Awareness Week⁩. Non à la haine. Non à l’islamophobie.” — Julie Miville-Dechêne, Sénatrice indépendante du Québec/Independent Senator from Quebec

( Photo credit : Julie Miville-Dechêne )


“Cinq ans depuis l’attentat de la Grande mosquée de Québec. Le devoir d’agir demeure. Sensibilisons, éduquons, dénonçons et faisons en sorte que les voix qui s’élèvent contre l’intolérance restent plus fortes que celles qui véhiculent la haine.” — Aref Salim, Chef de l’Opposition officielle à l’Hôtel de ville de Montréal et conseiller de la Ville dans Saint Laurent

( Photo credit : Ensemble Montréal )


Hanan El Nossery was among the 150 Montrealers to brave the cold and mark the fifth anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque shootings with a community gathering outside Metro Parc in Montreal on Saturday January 29 2022 to honour the victims.

( Photo credit : Dave Sidaway /Montreal Gazette )


Ce soir à la commémoration en mémoire aux victimes de l’attentat survenu à la Grande Mosquée de Québec.

Samedi matin, Mairesse de Montréal Valérie Plante a dite :

“5 ans après l’attentat à la grande mosquée de Québec, honorons les victimes de l’attaque islamophobe et agissons pour qu’une telle violence ne se reproduise pas.

“Dénonçons et combattons l’intolérance et faisons preuve d’ouverture, pour une société et une ville plus justes.”

( Photo credit : Paule Robitaille )


Commémoration de tuerie de la mosquée CCIQ à Montréal.

“This evening, I learned a little more about the impact of the January 29th masacre of six men as they worshiped with their spiritual community.

“Provincial racist policies still stand, and the premiere continued to deny institutionalized racism after Quebequers demanded justice for Joyce Echaquan.

“White supremacists settler colonialism is alive and well funded.

“We know this because of what is going down in Ottawa this weekend.

“Tonight, take pause to remember the men who were gruesomely torn from their families and every victim of violent and daily Islamophobia across so-called Canada and all of Turtle Island.” — Jen Castro, Montreal

( Photo credit : Jen Castro )


Vendredi 28 janvier 2022 :

“Le Consul adjoint Pierre Rannou a assisté au nom du Consulat à la cérémonie de commémoration de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec, organisée par le Forum Musulman Canadien en présence de Pablo Rodriguez, Député Honoré-Mercier, ministre du Patrimoine canadien et lieutenant du Québec, et Valérie Plante, Mairesse de Montréal.🕯” — Consulat général de France à Montréal

( Diptych credit : Consulat général de France à Montréal )


Vendredi 28 janvier 2022 :

“Commémoration de l’attentat de la Grande Mosquée de Québec, organisée par le Forum Musulman Canadien. En la mémoire de ces 6 Québécois à qui on a injustement enlevé la vie.

“Pour un Québec inclusif et fier de sa diversité culturelle.” — Dominique Anglade, Cheffe de l’opposition officielle et députée de Saint-Henri–Sainte-Anne

Samedi 29 janvier 2022 :

“Il y a cinq ans, nous vivions une horrible tragédie.

“L’attentat de la Grande mosquée de Québec faisait six victimes à qui on a injustement enlevé la vie.

“En leur mémoire, nous avons le devoir de nous souvenir de ce qui s’est produit le 29 janvier 2017.

“Nous devons poursuivre la lutte contre l’islamophobie.

“C’est en combattant l’ignorance, en s’ouvrant et en apprenant à se connaître, que nous nous engageons dans la première étape pour briser les barrières de la discrimination, des stéréotypes et des préjugés.

“Je crois à un Québec inclusif et fier de la richesse de ses gens.

“Et cette tragédie doit demeurer un rappel constant de ce que nous ne voulons plus jamais vivre.” — Dominique Anglade

( Photo credit: Dominique Anglade )


Vendredi 28 janvier 2022 :

“La tour de l’Université de Montréal sera éclairée en vert demain soir pour commémorer les victimes de l’attaque de la mosquée de Québec, il y a 5 ans.

“C’est un rappel du travail à faire pour éradiquer la haine et l’islamophobie qui, tristement, persiste dans notre société.” — Daniel Jutras, Recteur de l’Université de Montréal

( Photo credit: Daniel Jutras )


“As we mark the first National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia, our Clock Tower will be lit green in honour of the 6 lives lost & 19 others who were injured 5 years ago, and as a signal of our commitment to fight anti-Muslim hate.” — Bonnie Crombie, Mayor of Mississauga, Ontario

“Violence, Islamophobia and hatred will never have a place in Mississauga.

“Today, I’m joining the #GreenSquareCampaign🟩 to stand in solidarity with our Muslim communities as we mark 5 years since the tragic attack at a Quebec City mosque that took the lives of 6 innocent people.” — Mayor Bonnie Crombie

( Photo credit : City of Mississauga )


“Schneider Haus lit up in green downtown Kitchener tonight.

“Islamophobia & religious hate have no place in Canada.

“Today, we stand in solidarity with our local Muslim community and remember the victims.” — Schneider Haus, National Historic Site

“This weekend, residents across Waterloo Region will honour and remember the six people killed in an anti-Muslim terrorist attack in Quebec City on January 29, 2017.

“They are not forgotten:

Ibrahima Barry
Mamadou Tanou Barry
Khaled Belkacemi
Abdelkrim Hassane
Azzedine Soufiane
Aboubaker Thabti

“Nineteen people were also injured that day at the Centre culturel islamique de Québec.

“The Green Square campaign exists to remember the lives lost and show solidarity with our Muslim community.

“This weekend, buildings like Schneider Haus, as well as signs and streets across the region will be illuminated with green lights.

“We know that this is not the only anti-Muslim attack that has impacted our friends and neighbours.

“Last year, Madiha Salman and Salma, Yumna, and Talat Afzaal were killed when out for a walk in London. …

“Islamophobia and religious hate have no place in Canada.

“No one should be discriminated against based on their religion.

“Today, we stand in solidarity with our local Muslim community and remember the victims.

“Thank you to leaders and organizations working everyday to educate our community and counter Islamophobia.

“In particular, I would like to recognize the continued work and collaboration of the Coalition of Muslim Women.

“Their resources can be found at

“We stand with you in solidarity.” — Karen Redman, Chair, Regional Municipality of Waterloo, Ontario

( Photo credit : Region of Waterloo Museums & Archives )


“Horrified to learn of the unspeakable and shocking attack at the Sainte-Foy mosque in Quebec City.

“Thoughts & prayers are with the families.” — Patrick Brown, Leader of the Opposition, Leader of Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario, 11:14 p.m. Sunday January 29 2017

“Visited the Sainte-Foy Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec masjid with Brampton City Councillors Rowena Santos, Paul Vicente & Gurpreet Dhillon on the 27th night of Ramadan.

“I fasted today to show my solidarity with the community.

“We wanted to pay our respects given this was the site of the Quebec Mosque Shooting.” — Patrick Brown, Mayor of Brampton, Friday May 31 2019

“We broke fast tonight with friends & survivors of the Quebec Mosque Shooting.

“Brampton, Quebec and Canada will never forget Abdelkrim Hassane, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Ibrahima Barry & Azzeddine Soufiane.

“Love will always win over hate in Canada.” — Mayor Patrick Brown, Friday May 31 2019

“A few years ago, I visited the Quebec Masjid during an FCM meeting in Quebec City.

“It was during Ramadan, when I was there, I broke my fast with the leadership of the Masjid.

“And I remember being taken aback, horrified, as I looked at that Masjid and there were still some bullet marks from where the attack happened.” — Mayor Patrick Brown, January 29 2022

( Photo credit : Patrick Brown / Office of the Mayor of Brampton )

“Visit to Sainte-Foy Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec masjid with Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown and Members of Council, Rowena Santos, Paul Vicente & Gurpreet Dhillon on the 27th night of Ramadan.

“Paying our respects.

“Two years since the Quebec Mosque Shooting.” — Urz Heer, Maghrib Sunset Time, Friday May 31 2019

( Video credit : Urz Heer )


City of Brampton’s clock tower lit green in honour of the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

( Photo credit : City of Brampton, Ontario )


“Tonight the Cambridge sign and pedestrian bridge will be lit green in Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and a day of action against Islamophobia.

“Hate has no place in our community and we must continue to work together to end Islamophobia.” — Kathryn McGarry, Mayor of Cambridge, Ontario

( Photo credit : City of Cambridge )


“The Winnipeg Sign will be lit green tonight, 5 years after the horrific Quebec City mosque attack, in honour of the victims & families still grieving to this day.

“Winnipeggers continue to stand against all forms of racism including that which is targeted against Muslims in our city.” — Brian Bowman, Mayor of Winnipeg, Manitoba

( Photo credit: Mayor Brian Bowman )


“After a deeply disturbing day for the vast majority of Canadians who stand against racism and hate, the Winnipeg Sign is proudly lit green tonight in honour of the victims of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and in recognition of this Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia.” — Brian Bowman, Mayor of Winnipeg, Manitoba

“January 29, 2022 marked the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“In 2017, a lone gunman entered a mosque in Quebec while congregants were in the midst of prayer, and opened fire on Muslim worshippers, killing six and injuring many more.

“Winnipeg’s Jewish community stands with the Muslim community.

“As Jews, we understand that unfettered hatred can lead to violence.

“There is no room in Canadian society for hatred, bigotry, or intolerance.

“It is an attack on the health of our communities, escalates if left unchallenged, and must be exposed and denounced wherever it occurs.

“We know that by looking at recent headlines and figures on hate crimes, that much work must be done.

“The Jewish Federation of Winnipeg continues to advocate with all levels of government to ensure that this troubling trend is reversed.

“We stand in solidarity with the six widows, children left fatherless, and those whose lives were irreversibly changed by this hateful and senseless act.” — Gustavo Zentner, President, Jewish Federation of Winnipeg

( Photo credit: Mayor Brian Bowman )


Five-Year Anniversary: Prayers for Peace & Remembrance for the Victims of the Québec City Mosque Shooting.

This Multi-Faith virtual commemoration was Livestreamed from Kingston, Ontario.

Speakers on this virtual floor included :

Imam AbuBakar Mulla, The Imam of Islamic Centre of Kingston

Land Acknowledgement by Laurel Claus-Johnson, Katarowki Grandmothers’ Council

Imam AbdurRashid Taylor, Regional Chaplain, Correctional Service Canada; Director, Islamic Chaplaincy Service Canada

Bishop Michael Oulton, The Anglican Church of Canada, Dioces of Ontario

Debbie Fitzerman, President, Kingston Jewish Council

Hladini Wilson & Paramita Jarvis from Sri Chinmoy Meditation Centre of Kingston

Reverend Elizabeth Macdonald, Retired Minister, United Church of Canada

Rabbi Erin Polanski, Beth Israel Congregation

Mayor Bryan Paterson, City of Kingston

Ian Arthur, MPP Kingston and the Islands

Mark Gerretsen, MP Kingston and the Islands

And was moderated by Dr. Mona Rahman.

( Image credit : Islamic Society of Kingston )


“Had to run down and see it.

“Tonight, City Of Kingston is lit up green and purple to mark the 5th anniversary of the Quebec City mosque attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“Huge love for any and all steps taken that encourage inclusion in this town.” — Ben McLean, MOVE 98.3 FM

Kingston, Ontario honoured the six killed in the Quebec City Mosque attack and all who are victims of Islamophobia by lighting up City Hall in green for the Green Square Campaign.

City Hall was also lit purple to honour Yumna Afzaal, who was killed alongside three members of her family in London, Ontario.

Dr. Mona Rahman of Queen’s University explained,

“This is the first year that Kingston City Council has approved for the lighting up of City Hall in recognition of the day,”

“We chose green for the Green Square Campaign, but you can actually choose a secondary colour as well.

“And we chose purple… because purple was the favourite colour of the young woman who was killed with her family in London.”

( Photo credit : Ben McLean )


Canada Life Building in London, Ontario.

One corner of their building was illuminated purple from street level to top floor.

Their top floor was illuminated green.

( Photo credit : Saimah Sa / Islamic Relief Canada )


“Today is the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action against Islamophobia.

“We honour the memory of the victims & stand together with the survivors of the January 29, 2017 tragedy.” — City of London

London City Hall illuminated green.

( Photo credit : Saimah Sa / Islamic Relief Canada )


J.A. Taylor Building in London, Ontario.

The city’s Downtown London Tourism Welcome Centre is located inside this building at street level.

Anyone looking at 391 Wellington Street, southwest corner of Dundas & Wellington, on the evening of January 29 2022 would be visually welcomed with Green Lighting.

A public reminder to remember, reflect.

( Photo credit : Saimah Sa / Islamic Relief Canada )


Headquarters of London Life Insurance in London, Ontario.

Built in 1874, their headquarters building opposite Victoria Park, was lit green on January 29 2022.

( Photo credit : Saimah Sa / Islamic Relief Canada )


“Today is the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack & Action Against Islamophobia.

“5 years ago, 6 people lost their lives during an attack at the Centre Culturel Islamique.

“To honour those lives, & Canada’s Muslim community, the Grand Theatre is lit green.” — Grand Theatre, London, Ontario

( Photo credit : Grand Theatre )


“The downtown has been awash in green this weekend in remembrance of the victims and survivors of the Quebec city mosque attack, and in solidarity against Islamophobia.

“The colour green is used because it was the colour of the carpet in the mosque where 6 men were murdered by an Islamophobic, white supremacist.

“As I stand on my balcony and try to reflect upon the conditions that could possibly create space for such horror, for such intolerance, I’m simply overwhelmed by the images of hate that have imprinted in my mind’s eye from this weekend.

“And it’s hard to find hope right now.

“It’s impossible to hear the breath of a better world above all of this vacuous noise.

“We have to find a way to do better, to be better.

“Peace. And solidarity.” — Kim Crump, London, Ontario

( Video credit : Kim Crump )


“15 minutes of green-lit water.

“5 years of grieving, loss, and work towards ending hate.

“Our communities stand and withstand.

“Solidarity comes from the core of who you are.” — Rizwana Kaderdina

Niagara Falls lit green on Saturday Night, January 29 2022.

( Photo credit: Rizwana Kaderdina )


At 10:15 p.m. for a fifteen minute duration, Niagara Falls was lit green as one of a number of nation-wide Monument Lightings for the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

Because the New York State side of Niagara Falls was also illuminated green from projectors on the Canadian side, Canada’s National Day of Remembrance became International.

( Photo credit: Rizwana Kaderdina )


“Our Illumination Board has scheduled a lighting of the Falls in green from 10:15-10:30 PM on January 29 for the National Day of Remembrance of the devastating Quebec City Mosque Attack.” — Jim Diodati, Mayor of Niagara Falls, Ontario

“AEMS members visited Niagara Falls on January 29, 2022.

“Bearing witness to the remembrance of the victims of the Quebec Mosque Massacre and Canada’s commitment to Action.” — Alliance of Educators for Muslim Students

( Video credit: Alliance of Educators for Muslim Students AEMS )


“Tonight, Town of Minto joins cities across Canada in commemorating the first annual National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
“The lights in Tannery Park will shine green as we stand in solidarity with the victims of the Islamic Cultural Centre shooting, reflect on this dark piece of Canadian history, + work towards a future without Islamophobia and hate.” — Town of Minto, Ontario

( Photo credit : Town of Minto )


“Five years ago, today, Canada experienced a brutal massacre at the Quebec City Grand Mosque that killed 6 people and seriously injured 19 others.

“Senseless attacks based on religion have no place anywhere in our communities.

“Our differences make where we live a more vibrant and culturally rich place.

“We honour those we lost, the survivors and their families, and stand with the Muslim community.

“Our Burlington Pier will be lit green tonight in commemoration of National Day of Remembrance & Action Against Islamophobia.” — Marianne Meed Ward, Mayor of Burlington, Ontario

( Photo credit : BT Do )


“Since 2017, there have been many vigils and expressions of solidarity extended toward the Muslim community.

“That is greatly appreciated.

“We also note that on July 29, 2019 Saskatoon city council declared January 29 a Day of Action Against Hatred and Intolerance and the Government of Saskatchewan also proclaimed January 29 to be a Provincial Day of Action Against Hate and Intolerance.

“We further understand that the federal government is considering the appointment of a special envoy on Islamophobia.

“This must be done without further delay.

“These are important steps in helping to combat Islamophobia.

“However, vigils and expressions of solidarity only go so far and meaningful action must be taken.

“Since 2017, there have been repeated instances of violence against Muslims in Canada including the September 2020 killing of a volunteer caretaker at the IMO Mosque in Toronto, stabbed to death by a male with links to neo-Nazi sites.

Then there was the June 2021 slaughter of the Afzaal family in London, Ontario.

“They were out for an evening stroll when they were run down by a driver in a pick-up truck, killing four members of the family.

“In Saskatoon, members of the Muslim community have also been targeted with violence.

In July 2018, a member was walking home after dawn prayers at the Saskatoon Islamic Centre Mosque when he was pinned against the hedge in front of his home by a driver in a pick-up truck, was threatened with violence and had his living room windows smashed.

In September 2021, another Muslim, while out for his morning walk, was attacked by two men, stabbed, beaten, and had his beard cut off with a knife.

“Additionally, incidents of violence against Muslims in other parts of our country have also occurred with alarming frequency and seeming impunity.”

“Most recently, in addition to threats and actual violence, Muslims are now also further victimized by ill-conceived legislation such as Quebec’s Bill 21.” — Daniel J. Kuhlen, Co-chair of the media, communications and outreach committee of The Islamic Association of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon division

“Five years ago today, six Canadians were murdered in a Quebec City mosque because of their culture and beliefs.

“This is now the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia.

“In solidarity and remembrance of those who were killed and injured, Saskatoon is proclaiming January 29th as a Day of Action Against Hatred and Intolerance.

“In recognition of this day, the Prairie Wind installation and SaskTel Centre will be lit green.” — Charlie Clark, Mayor of Saskatoon

( Photo credit : Islamic Association of Saskatchewan )


The Prairie Wind Landmark stands atop a traffic island roundabout beside River Landing, opposite Saskatoon’s rRemai mModern Contemporary Art Gallery.

Designed to echo the experience of watching a field of tall grass swaying in the wind,

The public sculpture consists of twenty-five 15 metre tall steel poles, each on a rubber bearing pad.

This allows the poles to sway in the wind, giving the impression of Saskatchewan’s prairie grass.

Sixteen LED floodlights illuminate the landmark from the base, and can be programmed to change colour.

For the National Day of Remembrance, Saturday January 29 2022, The Prairie Wind Landmark was green.

( Photo credit : NCCM Community )


“In recognition of the Day of Action Against Hate and Intolerance, our site is being lit in shades of green tonight.

“January 29th marks the fifth anniversary of the mass shooting at a Quebec City Mosque in 2017.

“Tonight our site is illuminated in green in an act of solidarity and remembrance to all those directly affected.

“Canadians shall not forget the victims or tolerate Islamophobia.” — Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan River, Saskatoon, Treaty 6 Territory

( Photo credit : Shakespeare on the Sask )


Vancouver’s historic triodetic dome in Queen Elizabeth Park sits atop the highest elevation point within Vancity’s borders.

Inside the triodetic dome exists a tropical paradise with over 150 free-flying tropical birds and 500 kinds of exotic plants.

“Bloedel will be illuminated green this evening for the Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia.

“The colour green evokes the green carpets where the victims of the Quebec City mosque shooting last stood to pray.” — Bloedel Conservatory

( Photo credit : Bloedel Conservatory / Vancouver Park Board )


CBSA Stop Islamophobia rally on the Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia

( Photo credit : Imtiaz Popat )


CBSA Stop Islamophobia rally on the Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia

( Photo credit : Imtiaz Popat )


CBSA Stop Islamophobia rally on the Day of Remembrance and Action Against Islamophobia

( Photo credit : Imtiaz Popat )


“City Hall will be illuminated green tonight for the Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia.

“The colour green evokes the green carpets where the victims of the Quebec City mosque shooting last stood to pray.” — City of Vancouver

“This year, on the Day of remembrance and Action on Islamophobia, we commemorate the fifth anniversary of the shootings at the Islamic Cultural Centre Mosque in Quebec City, where a white gunman killed six Muslim worshippers and injured several others.

“We honour the victims and their loved ones, as well as the victims of anti-Muslim hate and Islamophobia.

“The purpose of this day is to serve as an official commemoration of the victims and their families and to promote awareness and education about anti-Muslim hatred.

“Since the killings in Quebec, the Afzaal family in London, Ontario were also killed by a white supremacist in June 2021, leaving nine year old Fayez, an orphan.

“Policies such as Bill 21 in Quebec, which bars public servants from wearing religious symbols such as hijabs, turbans, yamakas and crosses, further perpetuate systemic issues that already target people marginalized by other policies.

“In Vancouver, there are plenty of unreported and reported cases, including one from June 2021 of a white men harassing a Muslim woman in Vancouver at a bus stop at 49th Avenue in Main Street.

“To combat Islamophobia, we need to address the perils of white supremacy and we need to be committed to an anti-racist equitable world.

“To achieve this, the City of Vancouver has developed an equity framework.

“We have committed to being a City of Reconciliation, and we are making great efforts towards anti-racism, to be an accessible city, and to pursuing the healthy city strategy.

“Muslim communities around the world, across Canada and in Vancouver were, and continue to be affected by acts of hate, racism and anti-Muslim sentiment.

“City Hall and the Burrard Street Bridge will be illuminated in green representing the green carpets of the Quebec City Mosque, where the victims of the January 29, 2017 attack last stood to pray.

“It is more important than ever that the lessons learned from the senseless act of violence remain at the forefront of the public consciousness, so they are never repeated.” — Kennedy Stewart, Mayor of Vancouver

( Photo credit : British Columbia Muslim Association / Richmond Jamea Masjid )


“Today marks the fifth anniversary and the first national day of remembrance of the mosque shooting in Quebec City five years ago.

“We stand with our Muslim community here in Victoria and across the country, we condemn this horrific act, we mourn with the families, and in order to show our commitment to the diversity, inclusion and combatting racism and Islamophobia, today we are lighting City Hall up green as a statement of solidarity.” — Mayor Lisa Helps, City of Victoria, British Columbia

( Photo credit : City of Victoria )


Archway of the Ceremonial Entrance to the Parliament Buildings, the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia, beginning at dusk was illuminated green on Saturday January 29 2022.

“Although five years have passed since the terrorist attack on the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec, the shock and horror of this despicable act have not diminished.

“The attack claimed the lives of six people and injured several more.

“It brought violence into a place of sanctity and affected Muslim communities around the world.

“We honour the memory of Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzedine Soufiane and Aboubaker Thabti.

“Thanks to their sacrifice, many more lives were saved.

“We join their families, friends and communities in mourning their loss.

“We are a stronger society when united by compassion rather than divided by hatred.

“Our response to this heinous attack must be to always confront Islamophobia in all its forms.

“We must be united in our opposition to hate speech and racist violence as we build a more equitable society that promotes respect for all.

“On this sombre anniversary, we stand with the Muslim community by pledging to continue the fight against hate, bigotry and Islamophobia.” — John Horgan, Premier of British Columbia

( Photo credit : British Columbia Muslim Association / Richmond Jamea Masjid )


Centre Fountain on the grounds of the Provincial Parliament Buildings illuminated green beginning at dusk on January 29 2022. Victoria, British Columbia.

( Photo credit : British Columbia Muslim Association / Richmond Jamea Masjid )


BC Place illuminated green.

( Photo credit : Islamic Relief Canada )


“Before this day is done I would be remiss if I didn’t post my green square for #GreenSquareCampaign🟩.

“Today & everyday I remember those innocent lives lost at the Quebec Mosque & commit myself to standing up for safe houses of worship & an end to Islamophobia.” — Ezra S. Shanken, CEO of Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver

( Photo credit : Ezra S. Shanken )


Telus SKY tower in downtown Calgary, Alberta, lit green on Saturday January 29 2022.

“Five years ago today, six people were killed in the Quebec City mosque attack.

“This hate driven mass killing prompted a national day of remembrance.

“I hope deeply that it also continues to spur a conversation and action designed to combat racism at a leadership level and in our own personal lives.

“It is not enough not to be racist ourselves, we must be anti-racist.

“It was important for me to join people from across Alberta at a vigil in 2017, following this horrible act.

“Together, our collective spirit and our pledge to promote love and equality over everything will make an impact not only on our lives, but on those of all future generations of Albertans.” — Rachel Notley, Leader of Alberta’s New Democratic Party

( Photo credit : Lovejivan Sidhu )


Calgary Tower lit green on Saturday evening, January 29 2022.

“Five years ago, our country experienced terror and tragedy in the Québec City Mosque Attack.

“Today, we are still seeing attacks on the Muslim community, including right here in Alberta.

“We must do more.

“We must reaffirm our commitment to fighting hate and racism.” — Rachel Notley, Leader of Alberta’s New Democratic Party

( Photo credit : NCCM Community )


“A few months after the Quebec mosque shooting that claimed 6 lives, I gathered with the women in my family at a Toronto mosque to prepare the body of my cousin for burial.

“It was well after midnight.

“There were multiple police cars in the parking lot.

“The police were there as a precaution.

“They were stationed there because they were on high alert around the city after the massacre in Quebec, particularly at mosques.

“Inside, we women lovingly bathed and wrapped the body of my dearest cousin.

“This ritual stays with me as one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking experiences of my life.

“I’ve never felt more connected to my cousin and my family than I did that night.

“When we emerged from the mosque in the wee hours of the morning – it was still dark out – the sight of those police cars brought it home to me that my family and I were not safe, even when performing the most peaceful and loving acts.

“It’s hard to express how unsettling and isolating it is to not feel safe where you should be safest. It shakes you to the core and changes you.

“This is how too many Canadian Muslims felt then & still feel now.

“So today we remember those who died. But as we see events taking place in Ottawa today & cities across Canada, we must painfully accept that the hate, racism and violence that led to that massacre is not our past.

“It is our present.

“It cannot be allowed to be our future. 🟩” — Rakhi Pancholi, MLA for Edmonton-Whitemud

CN Tower in Downtown Toronto illuminated green on Saturday January 29 2022.

Previously, The CN Tower rejected my request to light the tower green to observe Ramadan 2012 or Eid. I guess something changed. — HiMY SYeD /

( Photo credit : Shahaab Khan )


London Muslim Mosque lit with green lights in honour of the Québec Mosque Attack.

( Photo credit : London Muslim Mosque )


Short steps from the Quebec Islamic Cultural Centre, three stone plinths stand as the permanent public memorial to the six men who were killed on January 29 2017.

Each plinth is adorned with two names engraved in Roman and Arabic script,

Imbrahima Barry ~ Mamadou Tanou Barry

Khaled Belkacemi ~ Abdelkrim Hassane

Azzedine Soufiane ~ Aboubaker Thabti

Sculptures of leaves atop the plinths are in keeping with maple and elm trees growing on the grounds around the Masjid.

Islamic Geometry drawn from the Muslim cultures of the six men are designed into the aluminum sculptures of each leaf.

Tonight, alongside the public commemoration being held and livestreamed, this memorial was lit green.

( Photo credit : NCCM Community )



“Alhamdullilah for all of our eases and difficulties.

“Every moment has its purpose and its tests for us.

“There was such an outpouring of sentiments shared yesterday and in the days leading up to January 29th.

“Everything from personal posts to videos, corporate and institutional initiatives, masjid prayers and Jumah khutbah’s, media coverage and politician statements, greened monuments and photos out in front of them, report releases, IG stickers, filters, taglines, hashtags…you name it.

“And yes while visibility of all of this matters, sometimes it’s the quietest and most humble short private message that makes all the difference.

“Only Allah knows our intentions and where our true impact and value is.

“Of all of the messaging that I came across in recent days, it’s actually the quiet privately shared sentiments that personally meant the most 💚.

“But of all the messaging that was somewhat public, this sincere reflection from Nusaiba was what I wanted to make sure I didn’t forget.

“Thank you Nusaiba Al-Azem for this. 💚🤲🏽.

“May Allah reward you for holding this in your heart this way.

“The simplicity and realness of this is what it all comes down to.

“( And thank you Nusaiba for the permission to screenshot and share from your stories 🙏🏽💚🟩 )” — Dr. Fariha Khan

“💚 big feelings to know this moment was as impactful for you as it was for me. 💚💚💚💚

“May Allah ease the loss of these men on their loved ones and community.

“May He grant them sabr and may He guide us to build a world where we have no need to commemorate or reflect inshaAllah 🤲🏼” — Nusaiba Al-Azem, Vice-Chair, London Muslim Mosque

( Image credit : Dr. Fariha Khan )


CODA : Tuesday February 1 2022

“After these last days it felt appropriate to revisit this site in London, Ontario during my lunch walk.

“Canadian & in particular us white settlers have so much to do to fight racism & white supremacy

“Almost as appalling as these behaviours in Ottawa is the apathy of law enforcement & many politicians (or acceptance & encouragement )

“As many others have pointed out, the response would have been completely different if non-white protesters would behave the same. sickening” — Frank Beier, London, Ontario

Makeshift Memorial on the corner of Hyde Park Road and South Carriage Road in London, Ontario ( site of the Sunday June 6 2021 #OurLondonFamily attack ).

( Photo credit : Frank Beier )


Leave a Reply