London ont. -
Thousands took part in a march to end hatred Friday evening in London.
It was in response to a deadly attack on a Muslim family last weekend, that left the commmunity in shock and mourning.
“Please no hating,” said an emotional march participant Leila Masserendine. “You are in Canada. Love each other. All you are Canadian. Love each other. Forget about hating.”
The march followed what police called a deliberate attack when a pickup truck mounted a curb and struck a Muslim family. Three generations of that family were killed. They have been identified as Salman Afzaal, 46, his 74-year-old mother Talat Afzaal, 44-year-old wife Madiha Salman, and their 15-year-old daughter Yumna Salman. A son, nine year old Fayez Salman, survived with serious injuries.
“The sense of compassion and show of solidarity and love and support have been extraordinary,” said Muslim faith leader Imam Abdul Fattah Twakkal. “It helps us to heal and this is the path that we want to take moving forward.”
Among the speakers at the starting line was John Davidson, known for walking across Canada with his late son Jesse to raise money for Duchenne Muscular Distrophy. He told the crowd that one act does not define a city. “The steps you take tonight send a clear message across the country and around the world that this is a loving, caring, and united community.”
Marchers walked south from the scene of the collision on Hyde Park Road at South Carriage Road to Oxford Street, then east to the London Muslim Mosque.