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October 4, 2022

Newtown shooting: Obama calls for new US gun controls

President Barack Obama has said the US must do more to protect its children in the wake of Friday’s shootings.

Speaking at an inter-faith vigil in Newtown, Mr Obama said he would use the powers of his office to prevent a repeat of the tragedy, the BBC reports. He told residents that the nation shared their grief. Twenty children and six women died in the assault on Sandy Hook school by a lone man who then took his own life. The first funerals, for two of the child victims, were held on Monday“I come to offer the love and prayers of a nation,” Mr Obama said, speaking after religious leaders and the state governor. “You are not alone in your grief. All across this land of ours we have wept with you.” Mr Obama repeated a call for action against gun crime, saying that in coming weeks he would use “whatever powers” his office held “in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this”. “We can’t tolerate this anymore,” he said. “These tragedies must end and to end them we must change.” The complex causes of gun crime “can’t be an excuse for inaction”, he said. Mr Obama was also meeting victims’ families and emergency service workers. All 20 children who died in the shootings – eight boys and 12 girls – were aged between six and seven, according to an official list of the dead. The school’s head teacher, Dawn Hochsprung, was among those killed. All victims were shot several times, some of them at close range. Police say the process of releasing the victims’ bodies to their families is under way.Mr Obama made an appeal for “meaningful action” against gun crime in the US shortly after the attack on Friday. Sunday saw two senior US Democrats call for stricter gun control. Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy said his state had an existing ban on assault weapons, but the lack of a similar law at federal level made it difficult to keep them out of the state.

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