World leaders are responding to the Uvalde school shooting: NPR

A man brings flowers to Robb Elementary School Wednesday in Uvalde, Texas.

Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

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Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

A man brings flowers to Robb Elementary School Wednesday in Uvalde, Texas.

Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

Officials around the world are responding to the Uvalde, Texas school shooting, the deadliest such incident to take place in the US in nearly a decade.

In emotional comments Tuesday night, President Biden characterized it as a uniquely American tragedy.

“They have mental health issues, they have domestic disputes in other countries,” he said. “They have people who are missing. But these kinds of mass shootings never happen as often as they do in the United States. Why?”

He then called on lawmakers to take on the gun lobby.

That same night, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern condemned the shooting, both as a politician and as a mother, in an appearance on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert. After two consecutive mosque shootings in 2019, New Zealand collected thousands of guns through a nationwide buyback, with lawmakers voting to ban nearly all semi-automatic weapons.

Asked by Colbert how the country was able to take such a step, Ardern described New Zealanders as “very pragmatic people.”

“When we saw something like this happen, everyone said never again, so it was incumbent on us as politicians to respond to that,” he said. “Now, we have legitimate gun needs in our country, for things like pest control and to protect our biodiversity, but you don’t need a military-style semi-automatic to do that.”

And New Zealand isn’t the only country drawing attention to the US stance on gun control. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin expressed condolences to the families of the victims, but also called the US government hypocritical for failing to act on gun violence at home while attacking foreign countries. for its human rights record.

Condolences also poured in from Ukrainian politicians, including President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who drew parallels between the loss of innocent young lives in Texas and his own war-torn country.

“The people of Ukraine share the pain of the families and friends of the victims and of all Americans,” he tweeted.

Pope Francis, while offering prayers, also issued a message about gun policies.

Officials from several countries, including Canada, France, Germany, Mexico and the United Kingdom, as well as world religious leaders, shared messages of shock and sympathy. Read some of their statements below.

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