Obama, Danish PM vow to confront terror, anti-Semitism together
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Obama, Danish PM vow to confront terror, anti-Semitism together

President welcomes Denmark's participation in 3-day summit on countering violent extremism

US President Barack Obama speaks about the Islamic State group, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
US President Barack Obama speaks about the Islamic State group, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2015, in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

US President Barack Obama expressed solidarity Monday with Denmark after two separate shootings, at a free-speech event and a synagogue, shocked the Nordic nation. The president vowed to confront anti-Semitism and assaults on freedom of expression together with Copenhagen.

Faced with the prospect of European Jews being again targeted by extremists, just over a month after similar attacks in Paris, governments were scrambling to reassure their Jewish communities.

The first victim, 55-year-old filmmaker Finn Norgaard, was killed when a gunman opened fire during a debate on free speech on Saturday.

The same attacker then targeted Copenhagen’s main synagogue, killing 37-year-old Dan Uzan.

During a telephone call, Obama and Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt “agreed on the need to work together to confront attacks on freedom of expression as well as against anti-Semitic violence,” the White House said in a statement.

A man kneels next to flowers laid in honor of the shooting victims outside the "Kruttoende" cultural center in Copenhagen, Denmark on February 15, 2015. (photo credit: AFP PHOTO / CLAUS BJORN LARSEN)
A man kneels next to flowers laid in honor of the shooting victims outside the “Kruttoende” cultural center in Copenhagen, Denmark on February 15, 2015. (photo credit: AFP PHOTO / CLAUS BJORN LARSEN)

It said Obama offered his condolences for the victims and expressed “American solidarity with our Danish allies.”

Obama also welcomed Denmark’s participation in a three-day, high-level summit he is hosting this week to share best practices and agree on a plan of action to counter radicalization, recruitment and incitement to violence, the White House said.

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