10/23/2014 08:11 EDT | Updated 12/23/2014 05:59 EST

Post-Shooting, Muslim Canadians Stand in Solidarity With Our Country

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This October 22, 2014 photo shows police at the scene of a shooting at the National War Memorial in Ottawa, Canada. Parliament Hill's Centre Block is in lockdown after a Canadian soldier standing guard at the National War Memorial in Ottawa was shot by an unknown gunman and there are reports of gunfire inside the halls of Parliament. AFP PHOTO / Michel COMTE (Photo credit should read MICHEL COMTE/AFP/Getty Images)

Our nation was rocked by shootings in Ottawa, which left two dead, including the attacker, Michael Zehaf-Bibeau and an innocent reservist standing guard at our War Memorial, Corporal Nathan Cirillo. Three other individuals were injured.

Schools and government offices were under lockdown, while businesses and roads in downtown were closed for much of the day. Some of our MPs and Parliament staff were in grave danger when the shooter attempted to enter the House of Commons by force. He was shot down by House of Commons Sergeant-at-Arms Kevin Vickers, a former RCMP officer, responsible for security on Parliament Hill.

Firstly, we convey our sincere condolences to the loved ones of Corporal Nathan Cirillo.

Secondly, we pray for those who were injured in the attack and wish them a full and speedy recovery.

Finally, we thank all those brave men and women, members of our law enforcement, who rose to the occasion of protecting Canada's citizens, schools and streets today and will continue. We owe much to your courage.

Muslim Canadians compose a vast number of communities which are truly diverse.

Ordinary Muslim Canadians in Ottawa on Wednesday had the same worries and concerns as everyone else. We were shocked the incident occurred in a place so otherwise familiar and safe. Throughout the day, while many folks were in lockdown at schools and at work, we worried about our kids, our partners, our loved ones and simply wanted to make sure that at the end of the day everyone returned home safe.

As Canadians we are blessed to live in a nation where everyone is free and equal under the law. Our organizations, among others, work to wipe out extremism both at home and abroad and will continue.

We stand in solidarity with our fellow Canadians, for peace and freedom and we cherish the open, just society in which we reside.

Salaamualaikum. May there be peace on you.

- Universalist Muslims and El-Tawhid Juma Circle.


In Photos: Ottawa Shooting