Justin Trudeau condemns killing of Canadian hostage John Ridsdel
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau denounced the killing of Canadian Robert Hall by a militant group in the Philippines as well as the mass shooting that saw dozens killed at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., on Sunday as “vicious acts of hatred and violence.”
The prime minister praised Hall’s family for their “strength of character in their resilience” in the face of what he described as a “terrible situation.”
“This is a grievous loss for them, and their country mourns with them,” Trudeau said in a brief press conference in the foyer of the House of Commons Monday.
Sources close to the situation in Jolo, the island where the al-Qaeda-linked group is based, and within Philippine security confirmed Hall’s death early Monday to CBC News.
Hall is the second Canadian to die at the hands of the extremist group in recent months after John Ridsdel was beheaded in April. Ridsdel and Hall were abducted last September from a seaside resort, along with Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad and Marites Flor, a Filipina national.
Trudeau reiterated the Canadian government’s policy not to pay ransom to hostage takers.
“We will not turn the maple leaf worn with pride by over 3 million Canadians abroad into targets,” Trudeau said.
“Terrorism is a scourge on the world. Too many families have endured the unspeakable grief the Hall family is feeling today because of these senseless acts of hatred,” Trudeau said. “On behalf of them and of all Canadians, we mourn their loss and reassert our resolve.” (Source: CBC News)