US President calls Orlando shooting ‘home-grown extremism’

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Washington, June 13 (IANS) US President Barack Obama on Monday said it appeared that the gunman in the Orlando massacre had been inspired by extremist information he found on the internet, but that there was no clear evidence he was part of a wider terrorist plot directed by the Islamic State (IS).

“As far as we can tell right now, this is certainly an example of the kind of home-grown extremism that all of us have been concerned about for a very long time,” the New York Times quoted Obama as saying.

The mass shooting at an Orlando nightclub on early Sunday was the deadliest in United States’ history. One out of every three people at the crowded Pulse nightclub was killed or injured.

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Obama said the mass shooting by Omar Mateen, which killed 49 people and is being investigated as an act of terrorism, appeared to be “similar” to the one in San Bernardino, California, last year. The perpetrators of that attack claimed allegiance to the Islamic State (IS), but had no direct connection to the group before unleashing a blood bath.

Obama said the Orlando shooting, which appeared to have been carried out with guns obtained legally, should also prompt Americans to “think about the risks that we are willing to take by being so lax in how we make very powerful firearms available to people in this country.”

“We make it very easy for individuals who are troubled, or disturbed, or want to engage in violent acts to obtain very powerful weapons very easily, and it’s a problem,” Obama said.

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