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Biden expresses shock over 'senseless' Illinois shooting at July 4 parade

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Washington | July 5, 2022 2:57:25 AM IST
US President Joe Biden expressed shock over "senseless gun violence" reported in the state of Illinois during the July 4 event on Monday.

As many as six people were killed and 24 were hospitalized in a shooting at the US Independence parade route in north suburban Highland Park in Illinois. Dozens of others were injured and sent to hospitals, with 12 of them in serious condition.

"Jill and I are shocked by the senseless gun violence that has yet again brought grief to an American community on this Independence Day. As always, we are grateful for the first responders and law enforcement on the scene," Biden said in a statement.

"I also surged Federal law enforcement to assist in the urgent search for the shooter, who remains at large at this time. Members of the community should follow guidance from leadership on the ground, and I will monitor closely as we learn more about those whose lives have been lost and pray for those who are in the hospital with grievous injuries," he added.

A gunman, who had apparently fired from a concealed spot on a rooftop, sent hundreds of marchers, parents with strollers and children on bicycles fleeing in terror.

The suspect remained on the loose hours later as authorities scoured the area, The Hill reported.

The Independence Day parade shooting was just the latest in the line of incidents reported in schools, churches, grocery stores and now community parades in recent months.

A statement posted on the website of the City of Highland Park advised all individuals to avoid the downtown area and shelter in place, saying the gunman is still at large.

Media reports said a firearm has been recovered at the scene. Law enforcement agencies are searching for the suspect. Highland Park is an affluent neighbourhood 43 kilometres north of Chicago.

The US Senate last month night passed a bipartisan bill to address gun violence in the United States, the first major piece of federal gun reform in almost 30 years.

Later Biden signed into law a bipartisan gun safety bill in order to prevent the access of firearms to dangerous people and to invest in new mental health across the country.

"I recently signed the first major bipartisan gun reform legislation in almost thirty years into law, which includes actions that will save lives. But there is much more work to do, and I'm not going to give up fighting the epidemic of gun violence," he said. (ANI)

 
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