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February 16, 2015 1:38 pm
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Prime Minister Thorning-Schmidt Says Danish Jews ‘Belong in Denmark’ (VIDEO)

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt said an attack against Jews is an attack against all of Denmark. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt on Monday encouraged Denmark’s Jewish community to stay in the country, a day after a terror attack at a Copenhagen synagogue left one young man dead.

“I want to make very clear that the Jewish community has been in this country for centuries,” Thorning-Schmidt said at a press conference. “They belong in Denmark. They’re part of the Danish community and we wouldn’t be the same without the Jewish community.”

Her comments came a day after Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu called for Europe’s Jews to immigrate to Israel en masse.

On Sunday, Thorning-Schmidt visited the site of the killing and said that an attack against the country’s Jews is an assault against all of Denmark.

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“Attacks against Jews hurt all of us,” she said.

She also expressed condolences to the family of the Jewish victim, as well as the filmmaker who was killed in an earlier attack by the same Islamist gunman at a free speech event at a local cafe. Five policemen were also wounded in the attacks in the Danish capital.

The alleged killer was shot dead by police shortly after the second attack and was named as Omar El-Hussein, a 22-year-old Islamist with a history of violence.

“When you mercilessly fire deadly bullets at innocent people taking part in a debate, when you attack the Jewish community, you attack our democracy, the whole of Denmark is attacked,” Thorning-Schmidt added while standing outside the synagogue. “We will do everything possible to protect our Jewish community.”

“Jews are a very important part of Danish society,” she stressed. “I say to the Jewish community – you are not alone.”

Thorning-Schmidt claimed that the motive for the shooter’s actions has not yet been determined “but we know that there are forces that want to hurt Denmark. They want to rebuke our freedom of speech.”

“We will defend our democracy and we will defend Denmark at any time.”

Watch a video of Thorning-Schmidt’s remarks on Monday below:

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