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16 Feb, 2015 08:29

1,000 march in Qatar over Muslim students’ US murder by white neighbor

1,000 march in Qatar over Muslim students’ US murder by white neighbor

About 1,000 people have taken to the streets of Doha, Qatar, to express their anger over the killing of three Muslim students in the US last week by their white neighbor.

Qatar branded the murder “a terrorist act.”

Protesters’ banners read, “End hate crimes”, “Unity”, and “We all have the right to live free from hate”, AFP reported.

Qatar's rally in solidarity w/ #ChapelHillShooting innocent victims. Now #QatarSolidarityWalk#CopenhagenShootingpic.twitter.com/CWJwcmJ34s

— Abdullah Hamad (@somu1410) February 15, 2015

US Ambassador to Qatar Dana Shell Smith was among the demonstrators.

She later posted to her Twitter that it was “good to see young people rejecting hate of all kinds.”

Attending student event in #Qatar honoring innocent lives lost, good to see young people rejecting hate of all kinds.

— Dana Shell Smith (@AmbDana) February 15, 2015

At the end of the march, the protesters watched a video message from Suzanne and Farris Barakat, the brother and sister of one of the murder victims.

#الله_اكبر@QF:The youth is the source of power for the community and the nation.#QatarSolidarityWalkpic.twitter.com/x3e1fwV22H

— Aisha K. al-Asmakh (@Ai_alasmakh) February 15, 2015

In the video, Farris said it was “amazing” that “the people of Qatar were thinking about us and the family.”

READ MORE:US TV show runs story on how to safely find parking in wake of Chapel Hill Muslim killings

The march was organized by a foundation headed by the mother of Qatar's emir, Sheikha Moza bint Nasser al-Masnad.

Hundreds join #QatarSolidarityWalk today to condemn #ChapelHillShooting and terrorism http://t.co/CrtJLdXI5C#Qatarpic.twitter.com/cuvaHeJYgT

— Bilal | بلال‎ (@bilalr) February 15, 2015

Last week, three students – 23-year-old Deah Shaddy Barakat, his 21-year-old wife Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha and her 19-year-old sister Razan – were allegedly murdered by their white neighbor Craig Stephen Hicks.

READ MORE:Hate crimes against Muslims in US have skyrocketed during ‘war on terror’

The killing happened in the North Carolina university town of Chapel Hill.

Respect - Love - Humanity - Security #QatarSolidarityWalkpic.twitter.com/SdinoSil98

— Moh.Qasem (@MohQALMutawakel) February 15, 2015

Hicks, 46, has been charged with three counts of murder, and is thought to be a fierce opponent of religion: on his Facebook page, he published anti-religious posts, including against Islam, Christianity and Mormons.

According to police, they are looking into the incident as a parking dispute. However, the students’ families believe the attack was religiously-motivated.