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Officials are labeling the Attack a Hate Crime

B’nai B’rith International has issued the following statement:

B’nai B’rith condemns the shooting at a historic African American church that left nine dead in Charleston, S.C.  

“We believe this is a hate crime; that is how we are investigating it,” Charleston Police Chief Greg Mullen said.

The victims were gathered for an evening prayer meeting at the Emanuel AME Church when a lone gunman opened fire after observing the service for about an hour. The congregation has been a fixture in Charleston since 1816.

Attacking people as they pray is the height of depravity.

Our thoughts and prayers go to the victims’ families and those injured in the attack.