The Pakistani relatives of the female shooter involved in this week’s killing spree in California say she and her father seem to have abandoned the family’s Islamic traditions and become Takfiris during the time they spent in Saudi Arabia.
Tashfeen Malik, 29, and her husband Syed Rizwan Farook, 28, stormed a holiday party in San Bernardino, California on Wednesday, killing at least 14 people and injuring 21 in the deadliest mass shooting in the US in three years. Hours later, the couple died in a fire exchange with police.
She had pledged allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the Daesh Takfiri group, three US officials familiar with the investigation told CNN on Friday. On Saturday, the Daesh terrorist group claimed the couple as their followers.
Malik’s actions have horrified her Pakistani Muslim relatives, Reuters reported on Saturday. Her father severed ties with his family after a dispute over inheritance more than two decades ago, and moved to Saudi Arabia when his daughter was a toddler, the relatives told the news agency. There, it seems, he turned to extremism/Takfirism.
“From what we heard, they lived differently, their mindset is different. We are from a land of Sufi saints … this is very shocking for us,” said school teacher Hifza Bibi, the step-sister of Malik’s father, who lives in Karor Lal Esan town in Punjab province.
“Our brother … went to Saudi and since then he doesn’t care about anyone here,” Bibi said. “A man who didn’t come to attend his own mother’s funeral, what can you expect from him?”
Tashfeen Malik came back to Pakistan and studied pharmacy at Multan’s Bahauddin Zakaria University from 2007 to 2012.
An intelligence official based in the nearby town of Layyah told Reuters that Malik was “known to be good student with no religious extremist tendencies.”
Malik’s uncle Javed Rabbani said he has not met his brother in three decades.
“We feel a lot of sadness but we also feel ashamed that someone from our family has done this,” he said. “We can’t even imagine doing something like this. This is a mindset that is alien to us.”
American Muslims fear that the San Bernardino shooting has fueled a new wave of Islamophobia is across the United States.
Only hours after news broke that suspects had Muslim names, American Muslims strongly condemned the incident, but this did not stop the US mainstream media from spewing hate and venom against Muslims and Islam.
American Muslims and their prayer leaders across the country say they are experiencing a wave of death threats, assaults and vandalism unlike anything they have experienced since the September 11 attacks in 2001 in the United States, The New York Times reported on Saturday.
By Press TV