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Orlando shooter’s father apologises for massacre

Gorkha Post

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NEW YORK — The father of the shooter who killed at least 50 people and injured 53 others when he opened fire early on Sunday in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, has apologised for the whole incident.

Various news sources Orlando gunman’s father apologizes for massacre

NEW YORK — The father of the shooter who killed no less than 50 people and injured 53 others when he started firing early on Sunday in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, has apologised for the whole incident.

Different news sources cited law enforcement officials in naming Omar Mateen as the shooter in the incident which killed as many as 50 people and injured 53, including a police officer.

“We are apologising for the whole incident. We were not aware of any action he is taking, we are in shock like the whole country. This had nothing to do with religion,” MSNBC news quoted the gunman’s father, Mir Seddique, as saying.

He claimed his son got very angry when he saw two men kissing in downtown Miami recently.

“We were in Downtown Miami, Bayside, people were playing music,”Seddique said.

“And he saw two men kissing each other in front of his wife and kid and he got very angry. They were kissing each other and touching,” he added.

After the incident, US President Barack Obama called the mass shooting an “act of terror” and “act of hate”.

The White House statement read: “The President was briefed this morning by Lisa Monaco, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, on the tragic shooting in Orlando, Florida. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of the victims.”

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“The President asked to receive regular updates as the FBI, and other federal officials, work with the Orlando Police to gather more information, and directed that the federal government provide any assistance necessary to pursue the investigation and support the community.”

The shooter, a resident of Port St Lucie, Florida, was also killed after a “gun battle” with police officers in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Islamic State (IS) terrorist group has claimed the responsibility for the shootings.

In a message published on the group’s semi-official news agency, Amaq, it described gunman Omar Mateen as a “soldier of the caliphate”, The Telegraph (UK) reported.

Although the statement did not clarify Mateen’s relation to the group, but the language appeared to suggest he was viewed as a lone wolf attacker.

Agencies

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South Korea to announce joint military drill plan with US before April

Thompson Reuters

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SEOUL — South Korea and the United States will announce plans before April for a postponed joint military drill, South Korea’s defense minister said on Tuesday.

Seoul and Washington had agreed to postpone the regular joint military exercise until after the Winter Olympics and Paralympics being hosted in South Korea, which end on March 18.

After the decision to delay the joint exercise, North Korea agreed to hold the first official talks with South Korea in more than two years and send athletes to the Winter Games, easing a standoff over Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programmes.

Asked when the two countries will hold the postponed drill, Song Young-moo told parliament he and his U.S. counterpart, Jim Mattis, would make an announcement between March 18 and the start of April.

“The exercise was postponed according to the spirit of the Olympics,” Song said. “We have agreed to uphold the basis until after the Paralympics…and not to confirm nor deny anything regarding what we would do after that until we announce it”.

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Song added inter-Korean talks had not come about as a direct result of the postponed drill.

But North Korea has warned it would not sit idle if the United States and South Korea push ahead with the postponed military exercises.

North Korea denounces the drills as preparations to invade it, and it has at times conducted missile tests or taken other aggressive action in response.

The South Korean and US militaries usually hold military exercises called Key Resolve and Foal Eagle in March and April, which can involve as many as 17,000 US troops and more than 300,000 South Koreans.

South Korea’s Unification Minister Cho Myong-gyon said talks to stage the postponed military drill were moving forward.

“I am aware negotiations are moving towards a direction where the drills will be held,” Cho said in a separate parliamentary session on Tuesday, without elaborating.

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