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Three Palestinian students shot near the University of Vermont

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University of Vermont             
Photo: rachaelvoorhees

Three Palestinian students were shot and wounded Saturday night, according to a police report.

The Burlington Police Department in Vermont reported that two of the three 20-year-old men are in stable condition, while the other is facing more serious injuries.

The victims were on their way to a Thanksgiving dinner at one of their relative’s homes and two of them were wearing Palestinian keffiyeh scarves, according to the police. The police report said the shooter fired at least four rounds from a pistol, striking all three students. Officers from the Burlington Police Department, the University of Vermont police department and other local forces immediately responded to the scene.

The three are Palestinian students attending colleges in the United States.

“In this charged moment, no one can look at this incident and not suspect that it may have been a hate-motivated crime. And I have already been in touch with federal investigatory and prosecutorial partners to prepare for that if it’s proven,” Burlington Police Chief Jon Murad said in a statement.

Hate crimes are considered federal offenses. A spokesperson for FBI Albany, which covers Vermont, said in a statement following news of the shooting that the bureau was investigating the incident to see if there was evidence of a “federal violation.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, is offering a $10,000 reward for any reports or information that could help arrest and convict the shooter.

Sen. Bernie Sanders issued a statement on the shooting in a social media post on Sunday.

“It is shocking and deeply upsetting that three young Palestinians were shot here in Burlington, VT. Hate has no place here, or anywhere. I look forward to a full investigation. My thoughts are with them and their families,” the Vermont independent lawmaker said in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

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