ANI Pittsburgh, PA, USA
Oct 30, 2018, 08.45 AM
With United States President Donald Trump slated to visit Pittsburgh in the wake of the shooting that claimed 11 lives, a former leader of the Tree of Life synagogue has said the president is "not welcome" in the city.
"I do not welcome this President to my city," Lynnette Lederman was quoted as saying by CNN as she was responding to questions regarding a letter from Jewish leaders who asked Trump to not visit Pittsburgh. Lederman further labelled Trump as "the purveyor of hate speech."
"The hypocritical words that come from him tell me nothing. We have very, very strong leadership in this city. We have a very strong mayor with very strong values, a very strong county executive in Rich Fitzgerald. We have people who stand by us, who believed in values, not just Jewish values, but believe in values and those are not the values of this President and I do not welcome him to Pittsburgh," the former president of the synagogue said.
Meanwhile, the current president of the synagogue, Rabbi Jeffrey Myers, who was conducting services during the shooting on Saturday, said "the President of the United States is always welcome."
"I`m a citizen. He`s my president. He is certainly welcome," Myers added.
Trump had earlier suggested that the perpetrator, identified as 46-year-old Robert Bowers, could have been thwarted had an armed guard been stationed outside the Jewish house of worship.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions confirmed that the Department of Justice "will file hate crimes and other criminal charges against the defendant, including charges that could lead to the death penalty."
The words were said by Lynnette Lederman, a former leader of the Tree of Life synagogue which was attacked on Saturday. The attack claimed 11 lives.