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Weeks before the mass shooting that took 50 lives at an Orlando gay nightclub by a Muslim gunman, a visiting imam at an Orlando-area mosque said all homosexuals must die.
Sheikh Farrokh Sekaleshfar delivered a rant directed against women and sexual minorities at the Sanford, Florida Husseini Islamic Center in April.
Sanford is nearby Orlando.
“Death is the sentence, Sekaleshfar told the gathering in a calm voice. “We know. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about this. Death is the sentence.”
He referred to the murder of gays an act of compassion.
“We have to have that compassion for people. With homosexuals, it’s the same. Out of compassion, let’s get rid of them now,” said Sekaleshfar.
Omar Mateen, the gunman in the Sunday morning shooting, has been described as a devout Muslim with a hatred of homosexuals. However, it’s unknown whether he attended Sekaleshfar April address.
Mateen was also the subject of two FBI investigations and placed on an FBI watch list.
Prior to the massacre, Mateen reportedly called 911 and an Orlando cable TV station and claimed allegiance to the Islamic State.
Local Channel 9 Eyewitness News reported on the event.
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Eyewitness 9 News clip via The United West.
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