(Vatican Radio/agencies) The fatal shooting of 6 women and 3 men at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina, on Wednesday night has provoked strong reactions from political, church and civil rights leaders across the U.S. and resurrected debate over the country’s controversial gun laws.
Dylann Storm Roof, a 21 year old white supremist, allegedly opened fire in the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church during bible study. A state senator who doubled as the church's minister, three other pastors, a regional library manager, a high school coach, a government administrator, a college counselor and a recent college graduate were killed.
Roof was arrested without incident Thursday in Shelby, North Carolina, after a motorist spotted him and tipped police.
President Barack Obama, who knew the pastor killed in the attack, said he has been
called upon too often to mourn the deaths of innocents killed by those ``who had no
trouble getting their hands on a gun.''
``Now is the time for mourning and for healing,'' the president said. ``But let's be clear. At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries. It doesn't happen in other places with this kind of frequency. And it is in our power to do something about it.''
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