CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – The President of the Islamic Society of Greater Chattanooga has condemned a deadly shooting that killed four U.S. Marines and injured three other victims.
In a statement released, Thursday, Bassam Issa called the shooting “cowardly” and condemned the act.
Authorities have still not released the motive for the attack that left four Marines dead at a recruiting center and another U.S. military site a few miles apart.
The alleged shooter, identified as 24-year-old Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez, was a naturalized citizen out of Kuwait. He graduated from UT Chattanooga with an engineering degree and worked as a shift supervisor at the Superior Essex plant on Southeast Parkway in Franklin a few months prior to the shooting.
The leadership of the Islamic Society of Greater Chattanooga said it was meeting with law enforcement agencies and other members of the Chattanooga community.
An interfaith prayer vigil honoring the victims is being held at 5:30 p.m. Friday, at the Mount Olivet Baptist Church in Chattanooga.
The full statement from Bassam Issa can be found below:
"We are tremendously saddened by today's shooting in our home town of Chattanooga, Tennessee. Our hearts are with the families of the brave Marines who died today and with the police officer and two bystanders who were shot and injured in this cowardly act.
We condemn this act in the strongest possible terms as one of cowardice and hate. At the Islamic Society of Greater Chattanooga, we don't see our community center as a "Muslim" community; we are Chattanoogans first, and we see ourselves as part of the larger community of Tennesseans grieving today's act."