François Legault's Twitter disables comments on the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City mosque attack
In past years, the comments on remembrance posts has been so hate-filled, staffers had to delete for hours
Quebec Premier Francois Legault's social media accounts were forced to disable comments after he issued a statement on the sixth anniversary of the Quebec City mosque attack honouring the victims killed that day.
On Jan. 29, six years after the deadly attack, Legault tweeted an emotional post remembering the tragedy.
"Remember this tragedy. We pay tribute to the victims and their families. On behalf of the Government of Quebec, I salute the memory of Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzedine Soufiane, Aboubaker Thabti: we will never forget you," he wrote on Twitter.
Rappelons-nous cette tragédie. Rendons hommage aux victimes et à leurs familles. Au nom du gouvernement du Québec, je salue la mémoire d’Ibrahima Barry, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzedine Soufiane, Aboubaker Thabti: nous ne vous oublierons jamais. pic.twitter.com/VMkB44xjdx
— François Legault (@francoislegault) January 29, 2023
The same post appeared on the Premier's Facebook page.
However, shortly after, people noticed that comments were disabled under both posts on Facebook and Twitter.
Les comptes Facebook et Twitter du premier ministre du Québec forcés de désactiver les commentaires sous la publication publiée à l’occasion du sixième anniversaire de l’attentat à la mosquée de Québec. 👇🏼 pic.twitter.com/tV3tgW1RUX
— Hadi Hassin (@hassinhadi) January 29, 2023
CBC Radio journalist Hadi Hassin pointed it out and many believe it's due to the racist comments made by many people online.
According to writer and activist Nora Loreto, "the comments were so overwhelming, so horrifying that staffers had to non-stop delete for hours into the morning."
Comments at Legault's facebook and twitter pages were disactivated in anticipation of the 6th anniversary vigil of the shooting attack in Sainte-Foy.
In past years, the comments were so overwhelming, so horrifying that staffers had to non-stop delete for hours into the morning. https://t.co/5V7XqW6xPx
— Nora Loreto (@NoLore) January 30, 2023
Six years after the deadly attack, Canadians gathered together in an emotional ceremony to mark the anniversary of the shooting—held inside the prayer room of the mosque where many victims were killed.
PM Trudeau and several minister of the cabinet attended as well.
The Twitter responses come just days after the government appointed human rights activist and journalist Amira Elghawabhy as Canada's first federal representative to fight Islamophobia.
On Jan. 29 2017, six people—Mamadou Tanou Barry, Ibrahima Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Abdelkrim Hassane, Azzeddine Soufiane and Aboubaker Thabti—were killed shortly after evening prayers when a gunman opened fire just before 8 p.m. in the Islamic Cultural Centre in the Sainte-Foy neighbourhood in Quebec. Five other worshippers were seriously injured.
The attack points to the importance of reflecting on Islamophobia, as hate and extremism has continually risen in Canada in the recent years.