Florida

Shooter’s father sits on his sofa and says: ‘I don’t forgive him’

Seddique Mateen, the father of the Pulse nightclub shooter, says, "I don't forgive him"

Seddique Mateen, the father of Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen, speaks with the media from his home on Mon., June 13, 2016 about Sunday's massacre.
Up Next
Seddique Mateen, the father of Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen, speaks with the media from his home on Mon., June 13, 2016 about Sunday's massacre.

Seddique Mateen addressed the media Monday morning from the couch of his Port St. Lucie home. Dressed in a suit, he sat in his spacious living room with a picture of his son as a boy next to him on a couch.

He expressed anger over his son's decision and repeated his message that religion did not influence his son's attack.

"I don’t forgive him as a father. Instead of doing this he should have gone and gotten a better education," Seddique said.

A gunman killed at least 49 people inside a gay nightclub in Orlando early Sunday morning. After holding hostages for hours, the gunman was killed by authorities in a shootout. More than 50 others were injured in the attack.

That message stands in contrast to videos and posts that surfaced of the elder Mateen denouncing gay people and seeming to support the Taliban. Seddique is originally from Afghanistan.

He spoke defensively when asked about the videos and when pressed to voice his opinion on the Taliban he denounced the group and similar terror groups.

"My idea is that all those terrorist groups should be destroyed and we should live in peace and tranquility," Seddique said.

During and after the interview, the father said he didn't want to talk politics and wanted to instead focus on the sad news. He also said he supported the work of the American government in his home country.

Photos of Pulse nightclub killer Omar Mateen taken from his social media accounts on Sun., June 12, 2016

"They are doing a wonderful job in Afghanistan and I appreciate their help," Seddique said.

Seddique also suggested that at some point he wanted to meet with some of the victims’ families and called them "family."

"What he did was absolutely wrong it’s against the nature of humanity," Seddique said.

Islamic Center of Fort Pierce spokesman Adel Nefzi last saw Mateen at the mosque Friday night. Omar Mateen killed 49 people in an Orlando club Sunday morning.

Related stories from Miami Herald

  Comments