Thousands have gathered in Copenhagen to commemorate the victims of a shopping center shooting over the weekend that left three dead, including two teenagers.
“Cruel, unfair and pointless. Tonight we are all mourning,” Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said to the huge crowd that gathered outside the Fields shopping complex where the attack took place on Tuesday. Frederiksen called for unity in the face of the tragedy.
A boy and girl, both 17, and a 47-year-old Russian man living in Denmark were killed and at least four people injured after a gunman opened fire in Copenhagen’s busy shopping center on Sunday.
The late afternoon shooting shook the town, which had just hosted the opening stages of the Tour de France cycling competition and the return of the Roskilde music festival after Covid-19 cancellations.
“It’s not hard to imagine, ‘what if it was my kid?’ – I am a mother of two teenagers,” Copenhagen Mayor Sophie Andersen said during a speech followed by a minute’s silence.
“Children and young people should not die. They should be immortal,” Andersen added.
Denmark’s Crown Prince Frederik also attended the service, where speeches were interrupted by musical performances.
“We stand together in this difficult time,” said Frederik.
The mood was somber, with some weeping among the many families and young people who had gathered.
“I’m pretty ambivalent. Of course it’s nice to see all these people who are here to support the people who have been injured by this action, but I’m also a bit scared,” said Oliver Stoltz, who works in a sports shop in the mall.
The 24-year-old was at Field’s – located between the city center and the capital’s airport – when shooting began and heard the first shots.
“It used to be a place where I could go to work, be happy and have a good time. Now I even dread coming here to this part of town.”
The suspected perpetrator of the attack, a 22-year-old Dane who authorities said was known to psychiatric services, was remanded in custody in a closed psychiatric ward on Monday for murder.
Police said Tuesday they had no new information to release about the investigation.
The Field mall has been closed since the attack and is expected to reopen on July 11.
Denmark’s largest cinema chain also closed all cinemas because the 17-year-old boy killed in the attack worked in the mall’s cinema.
Nordisk Film Biografer said on Facebook that the company made the decision out of respect for the victims and “to discuss the situation with our employees”.
With Agence France-Presse and Associated Press