Philadelphia shooting: Several injured after gunmen open fire amid Eid celebrations

Philadelphia mayor expresses solidarity with Muslim community as police arrest 5 people, recover multiple weapons from incident site

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Web Desk
A police officer patrols the area of a shooting that took place during an Eid event being held at Clara Muhammad Square in West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US on April 10, 2024. — Reuters
A police officer patrols the area of a shooting that took place during an Eid event being held at Clara Muhammad Square in West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, US on April 10, 2024. — Reuters
  • As many as three people injured in firing between two groups.
  • Authorities take 5 people into custody over shooting incident.
  • Police does not believe incident is linked to Eid festivities.

Eid celebrations in Pennsylvania, a state in the United States, turned sour after multiple people were injured in a firing incident at the Clara Muhammad Square park in Philadelphia.

The incident took place on Wednesday afternoon when two groups opened fire at each other at the site where around 1,000 people were gathered to celebrate the Eid-ul-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan for Muslims around the world.

Although no casualties have been reported so far, as many as three people are said to have sustained injuries in the incident which saw around 30 rounds being fired, Fox29 News reported.

Commenting on the incident, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Kevin Bethel said that one of the wounded is reported to be a 15-year-old gunman, armed with an assault rifle, who was engaged by an on-duty police officer.

The teenage gunman is in hospital and is in stable condition, the commissioner said while stressing that the police do not believe the incident to be connected to the Eid celebrations.

"99% of the individuals at this event are good people who wanted to have a good time. And once again, we have young people engaging in gunfire who just really destroyed the sanctity of the event," the BBC reported quoting Bethel.

Meanwhile, the police have taken five people into custody and have confiscated five weapons from the incident site.

Those taken into custody include three males, one female and the 15-year-old teenager.

The incident has left the Muslim community worried for their safety amid an increasingly polarising socio-political landscape which has seen a surge in Islamophobic incidents in recent years.

Recalling the incident, Najah Bey, who was attending the Eid celebrations, said: "It’s sad in Philadelphia. It's sad [that] you can't even have a celebration without worrying about getting shot."

Meanwhile, Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle L Parker reaffirmed support to the city's Muslim community stressing that people have the right to worship in peace regardless of their faith.

—X/PhillyMayor
—X/PhillyMayor

"In the midst of Eid al-Fitr, a Holy Day of celebration, our city’s Muslim community experienced a sacrilegious act of gun violence today in a West Philadelphia park," she said in a post on social media platform X.

"Every community of faith has the absolute right and need to worship in peace. We stand united with the Muslim community and vow to work together to restore balance and light to our communities," the mayor added.