US honours Arizona shooting victims


US President Barack Obama led mourning on Monday with a minute silence for the victims of an Arizona shooting rampage. He was joined by his wife Michelle Obama standing heads bowed a few steps before the South Lawn. Moments later they turned in silence before returning to the White House.


As the moment passed, Congressman Emanuel Cleaver led the group in prayer, saying: "We ask blessings on the spirit of this nation [...] help us move from this dark place to a place of sunshine [...] we ask that you help keep our hearts pure."

Six people were killed and US congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was left in a critical condition after 22-year-old Jared Loughner opened fire as Giffords was holding a public meeting in Tuscon, Arizona.

Loughner is set to stand before a US court later today charged with attempting to assassinate a US congresswoman.

A moment of silence was also observed at the US Supreme Court where the nine justices paused between two hearings.

In New York, the silence was also observed on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, where traders stood with heads bowed.

And in Tucson, Arizona, dozens of well-wishers turned out to offer their condolences at a makeshift shrine in front of the hospital where Giffords was being treated.

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