Syrian refugees pepper sprayed at Vancouver welcome event

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Vancouver Police are investigating a serious pepper spraying incident at an East Vancouver welcome event for Syrian refugees.

Just after 10:30 p.m. on Friday night, a large crowd of refugees, including children, were standing outside the Muslim Association of Canada Centre at 2122 Kingsway Avenue near Victoria Drive when an unknown man on a bicycle passed by and pepper sprayed the group.

Police say paramedics and firefighters treated a number of people for exposure to the pepper spray.

The suspect was wearing a white hooded sweatshirt at the time of the incident. The motive is not known, the investigation is in its early stages.

  • UPDATE at 12:01 p.m.Justin Trudeau, Christy Clark, and Gregor Robertson have issued separate statements condemning the attack and reaffirming their support for refugees in Canada. The Vancouver Police have also released an update, saying that they will be investigating the incident as a hate-motivated crime.

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