Nation

Reaction to Florida nightclub mass shooting

A police vehicle outside the Pulse nightclub.
GREGG NEWTON/AFP/Getty Images
A police vehicle outside the Pulse nightclub.

ORLANDO, Florida (AP) — Reaction to the Florida mass shooting at the Pulse Orlando nightclub Sunday when police say a gunman wielding an assault-type rifle opened fire before dying in a gunfight with SWAT officers; at least 50 people were killed and dozens of others wounded.

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‘‘We are looking at a massacre that has no precedent in the history of the gay community,’’ Rome’s Gay Center spokesman Fabrizio Marrazzo told the Italian news agency ANSA.

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‘‘We are heartbroken and angry that senseless violence has once again destroyed lives in our state and in our country. Gay clubs hold a significant place in LGBTQ history. They were often the only safe gathering place and this horrific act strikes directly at our sense of safety.’’ Equality Florida.

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‘‘It’s horrific, it’s unthinkable. And just hopes go out to all those who were shot that they can recover.’’ Bernie Sanders, Democratic presidential candidate, speaking on NBC’s ‘‘Meet the Press.’’

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‘‘Horrific incident in FL. Praying for all the victims & their families. When will this stop? When will we get tough, smart & vigilant?’’ Tweet from Donald Trump, Republican presidential candidate. He tweeted about an hour later: ‘‘Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism, I don’t want congrats, I want toughness & vigilance. We must be smart!’’

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‘‘Woke up to hear the devastating news from FL. As we wait for more information, my thoughts are with those affected by this horrific act.’’ Tweet from Hillary Clinton, Democratic presidential candidate.

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French President Francois Hollande ‘‘condemns with horror’’ the mass killing in Florida and ‘‘expresses the full support of France and the French with America’s authorities and its people in this difficult time.’’ Statement from Hollande’s office.

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‘‘My thoughts go out to the victims, to which I offer my condolences, as well as the many wounded, to whom I wish a speedy recovery. I express my solidarity to the American people and its authorities in this terrible ordeal.’’ French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault.

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‘‘We condemn this monstrous attack and offer our heartfelt condolences to the families and loved ones of all those killed or injured. The Muslim community joins our fellow Americans in repudiating anyone or any group that would claim to justify or excuse such an appalling act of violence.’’ Rasha Mubarak, Orlando regional coordinator for Florida’s chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

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‘‘Our heart is with our American brothers.’’ Tweet from Italian Premier Matteo Renzi.

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‘‘aghast by the ever more dramatic news of the nightclub massacre.’’ In a tweet from Italy’s foreign minister, Paolo Gentiloni.

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‘‘This morning, I will be marching in the West Hollywood Pride Parade with a heavy heart, but we will march in solidarity with all those who are the victims of terrorism and hatred.’’ Democratic U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff of California.

___ ‘‘Please keep everyone in your prayers as we work through this tragic event. Thank you for your thoughts and love.’’ Pulse Orlando on its Facebook page.

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‘‘I was thinking, ‘Are you kidding me?’ So I just dropped down. I just said, ‘Please, please, please, I want to make it out.’ And when I did, I saw people shot. I saw blood.’’ Christopher Hansen, who was in the VIP lounge when he heard gunshots.

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‘‘This is an incident, as I see it, that we certainly classify as domestic terror incident.’’ Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings.

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‘‘Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, families and all those affected by this horrific tragedy. We are a strong and resilient state and we will devote every resource available to assist with the shooting in Orlando.’’ Gov. Rick Scott.