Orlando massacre: Shooter was furious over 'filthy ways of the West'

Jun 17, 2016, 08:09 IST | Agencies

Omar Mateen wrote chilling Facebook posts from inside the Pulse club and made 16 phone calls, including three to 911, before and during the shooting

Washington: The gunman who killed 49 people at a gay club in the US this week wrote a series of Facebook posts about the "filthy ways of the West" before and during the shooting rampage, a top US Senator has said and asked the founder of the social networking site to assist in the probe.

Members of Capital City Pride and others from the LGBT community pay tribute to the victims in the recent shooting in Olympia. Pic/AP
Members of Capital City Pride and others from the LGBT community pay tribute to the victims in the recent shooting in Olympia. Pic/AP

Such an assertion by Senator Ron Johnson, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs came amidst reports that Omar Mateen (29) made as many as 16 phone calls, including three to 911 and one to a local television stations during the several hours of early Sunday morning when he carried out the deadliest shooting in American history.

Omar Mateen
Omar Mateen. Pic/AP

Johnson said according to information obtained by his staff, five Facebook accounts were apparently associated with Omar Mateen. On June 12, 2016, Mateen apparently searched for ‘Pulse Orlando’ and ‘Shooting’.

Mateen also apparently posted "America and Russia stop bombing the Islamic State...I pledge my alliance to Abu Bakr al Baghdadi...may Allah accept me." He then posted "The real Muslims will never accept the filthy ways of the West" and "You kill innocent women and children by doing US airstrikes.. now taste the Islamic State vengeance."

In a final post, Mateen apparently wrote, "In the next few days you will see attacks from the Islamic State in the USA."
In his letter on Wednesday, Johnson said his staff learned that in May 2016, Mateen used Facebook to search for information on the San Bernardino terrorists. On June 4, 2016, Mateen apparently searched ‘Baghdadi Speech’.

"My staff has also learned that Mateen apparently used Facebook to conduct frequent local law enforcement and FBI searches, including searching for specific law enforcement offices," Johnson said asking full support of Zuckerberg in its investigations.

Both a hate crime and terrorism: FBI

A US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) official said on Wednesday the massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida was both a hate crime and an act of terror. "This was an act of violence, born out of hate, that inflicted terror on an entire community. So I would call it a hate crime. I would call it terrorism. It’s both," said Ron Hopper, special FBI agent in charge of the case.

‘I don’t believe my son was gay'
Seddique Mir Mateen, the Afghan-born father of the gunman, said he did not believe his son was gay and that he did not forgive him for the suffering he has caused. "I doubt it," Mateen said when asked if it was true that his son had gay tendencies, as has been rumoured based on the testimony of Pulse’s patrons.

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