Sandy Hook School shooting: Voices from around the world
As officials continue to investigate the Sandy Hook School shooting, leaders and others from around the world weighed in on what seemed to many to be a typically American tragedy.
As officials continue to investigate the Sandy Hook School shooting – and as residents of the small Newtown, Connecticut, community search for answers to their own perhaps more profound questions – leaders and others from around the world weighed in on what seemed to many to be a typically American tragedy.Skip to next paragraph
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In a message beginning "Dear President Obama," Great Britain’s Queen Elizabeth said, "I have been deeply shocked and saddened to learn of the dreadful loss of life today in Newtown, Connecticut; particularly the news that so many of the dead are children."
"The thoughts and prayers of everyone in the United Kingdom and throughout the Commonwealth are with the families and friends of those killed and with all those who have been affected by today's events," the Queen said.
"My thoughts are with the injured and those who have lost loved ones,” British Prime Minister David Cameron said. “It is heartbreaking to think of those who have had their children robbed from them at such a young age, when they had so much life ahead of them.”
With more than 100,000 Chinese studying in US schools, a sense of shared grief came through.
"Parents with children studying in the US must be tense. School shootings happen often in the U.S. Can't politicians put away politics and prohibit gun sales?" Zhang Xin, a wealthy property developer, wrote on her feed on the Twitter-like Sina Weibo service, where she has 4.9 million followers.
In the Philippines, a society often afflicted by gun violence, President Benigno Aquino III said he and the Filipino people stand beside the United States "with bowed heads, yet in deep admiration over the manner in which the American people have reached out to comfort the afflicted, and to search for answers that will give meaning and hope to this grim event.
"We pray for healing, and that this heartbreak will never be visited on any community ever again," Aquino said in a statement tweeted by deputy presidential spokesman Abigail Valte.
In Thailand, which has one of Asia's highest rates of murder by firearms and has seen schools attacked by Islamist insurgents in its southern provinces, a columnist for the English-language daily newspaper The Nation blamed American culture for fostering a climate of violence.
"Repeated incidents of gunmen killing innocent people have shocked the Americans or us, but also made most people ignore it quickly," Thanong Khanthong wrote on Twitter. "Intentionally or not, Hollywood and video games have prepared people's mind to see killings and violence as normal and acceptable," he wrote.