Monday, July 22, 2024

Mass shooting near gay club in Norway before Pride parade

A mass shooting, which is being investigated as terrorism, killed two and wounded at least 20, just hours before Oslo’s Pride parade.

In an incident that has shocked LGBTQ+ communities around the world, progressive Scandinavian country Norway was rocked by a shooting in the early hours of Saturday morning that left two people dead and at least 10 others seriously wounded according to the New York Times, with the toll of injured is as high as 21.

Norwegian police forces have classified the attack as terrorism and identified a 42-year-old citizen as the suspect. The attack is also being investigated as a hate crime because of its location near London Pub, which is considered the heart of Oslo’s gay nightlife and a center of Norway’s LGBTQ community since 1979.

The horrific attack occurred outside a popular gay club in downtown Oslo, just hours before the city welcomed its first Pride parade since 2019 and the hiatus caused by the pandemic. In response to the tragedy, event organizers immediately canceled the parade and the ensuing 10-day festival.

Police said two men, one in his 50s and and the other his 60s, died in the shootings. 

“We encourage all of Norway to show solidarity and celebrate Pride at home, in their neighborhoods and towns,” Inger Kristin Haugsevje, the leader of Oslo Pride, said in a statement. This year’s Oslo Pride theme was “Everything is love,” according to the website.

But even in the wake of the shooting, hundreds of people took to the streets on Saturday to march along the parade route and stage a rally near the club. Oslo Pride describes itself as Norway’s largest celebration of queer love and diversity.

Watch video here.

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