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Imam expresses concern about rapid increase in Muslim converts since terrorist attack in Ottawa

Canada's Parliament Buildings hit by a terrorist attack in October, 2014. Photo: onasill/Foter/CC BY-NC-SA

Canada’s Parliament Buildings hit by a terrorist attack in October, 2014. Photo: onasill/Foter/CC BY-NC-SA

[by Dean Smith] According to an article in the National Post, there has been a sharp increase in people converting to Islam since the terrorist attack on Canada’s House of Commons in Ottawa this past fall.

The attack on Canada’s parliament by a lone terrorist took place on October 22, 2014. Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, who converted to Islam in 2004, killed a soldier guarding the War Memorial on Parliament Hill.

Armed with a 30-30 Winchester, he then made his way to the House of Commons, where Members of Parliament of both the governing Conservative Party and Liberal Party were having Caucus meetings. Prime Minister Stephen Harper was also in attendance.

Zehaf-Bibeau was shot and killed inside Parliament by Kevin Vickers, the Sergeant at Arms. Holding a largely ceremonial position. Vickers had to return to his office to retrieve a handgun before killing the terrorist in a shoot out.

Samy Metwally is imam of one of the largest mosques in Ottawa. Since the attack, he has noticed an unusually large interest in Islam by men aged 20 to 30.  He said between 15 to 20 men have shown up at his mosque wanting to convert to the Muslim faith.

After explaining Islam to them, Metwally said many have since disappeared. The imam expressed concern that at this stage, they are vulnerable to radicalization.

Some wonder why a violent terrorist attack would cause this interest in the first place?

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