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Sympathies expressed as victims of deadliest US attack on Jews named

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People hold candles at a vigil in the aftermath of the deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Congregation, in the Squirrel Hill neighbourhood of Pittsburgh

People hold candles at a vigil in the aftermath of the deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Congregation, in the Squirrel Hill neighbourhood of Pittsburgh

AP

People hold candles at a vigil in the aftermath of the deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Congregation, in the Squirrel Hill neighbourhood of Pittsburgh

The Belfast Jewish community has expressed its sympathy with the victims of a mass shooting at a US synagogue.

It came as the names of the 11 people killed in Saturday's attack in Pittsburgh were released.

Two brothers and a husband and wife were among those killed. The oldest was aged 97.

Six people were injured, including four policemen.

The suspect, Robert Bowers (46), is in custody and faces 29 criminal counts in what is thought to be the worst anti-Semitic attack in recent US history.

The Belfast Jewish community said: "Our deepest condolences and sympathies go out to our Jewish family in Pittsburgh at this shocking news."

Yesterday worshippers at Belfast synagogue expressed solidarity for the families of those caught up in the massacre .

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Spokesman Steven Jaffe said: "Everyone is horrified that people in their place of worship should be gunned down in this manner."

Mr Jaffe said the Belfast Jewish community had received messages of sympathy from across the Northern Ireland community in the wake of the attack.

Sinn Fein leader Michelle O'Neill said she condemned the "deplorable murderous attack" in the strongest possible terms.

It has emerged in court documents how the suspect expressed hatred of Jews during the rampage and told officers afterwards that Jews were committing genocide and that he wanted them all to die.

Bowers killed eight men and three women inside the Tree of Life synagogue during worship services before a tactical police team tracked him down and shot him, authorities said.

Court papers contained unreported details on the shooting and the police response.

"I just want to kill Jews," Bowers told an officer, according to one of the documents.

The dead included Melvin Wax, a retired accountant in his late 80s who was always one of the first to arrive at the synagogue and among the last to leave. The others killed were Joyce Fienberg (75), Richard Gottfried (65), Rose Mallinger (97), Jerry Rabinowitz (66), Cecil Rosenthal (59) and his brother David Rosenthal (54), Bernice Simon (84) and her husband Sylvan Simon (86), and Irving Younger (69).

Bowers was charged with 11 state counts of criminal homicide, six counts of aggravated assault and 13 counts of ethnic intimidation in what the leader of the Anti-Defamation League called the deadliest attack on Jews in US history.

He was also charged in a 29-count federal criminal complaint that included counts of obstructing the free exercise of religious beliefs, resulting in death - a federal hate crime - and using a firearm to commit murder.

US attorney general Jeff Sessions said the charges "could lead to the death penalty".


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