Gabrielle Giffords, the Jewish congresswoman who survived a 2011 Arizona assassination attempt, joined Jewish leaders in condemning the murder of British lawmaker Jo Cox.
“Absolutely sickened to hear of the assassination of Jo Cox. She was young, courageous, and hardworking. A rising star, mother, and wife,” she tweeted. Giffords is now a prominent gun safety advocate.
Cox, 41, died Thursday from wounds she sustained after being shot and stabbed several times on the street. Police arrested a suspect, a 52-year-old man. His alleged motive remains unknown.
Absolutely sickened to hear of the assassination of Jo Cox. She was young, courageous, and hardworking. A rising star, mother, and wife.— Gabrielle Giffords (@GabbyGiffords) June 16, 2016
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz also offered their condolences to Cox’s friends and family.
“What awful news. On behalf of the entire Democratic Party, our condolences to the Cox family and the UK,” Wasserman Schultz tweeted.
The reaction from America came after Board of Deputies of British Jews joined the chorus of condemnations over the slaying of Cox, a Labour Party lawmaker near Leeds, in northern England.
“The Board of Deputies wishes our condolences and prayers to all of Jo Cox’s family after her senseless murder today,” the Board of Deputies wrote on Twitter after word of her death spread. Before that, the organization said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with Labour MP Jo Cox after today’s horrific events.”
Cox had passionately campaigned for Britain to remain in the European Union in a June 23 referendum. According to some testimonies, the man believed to have shot Cox shouted “Britain first” before killing her, though other witnesses said they did not hear the shout.
Her husband, Brendan, said she would want people “to unite to fight against the hatred that killed her,” the BBC reported.
In Labour, Cox was one of several lawmakers who openly criticized the party’s leader, Jeremy Corbyn, for what she said was insufficient action to bring to a halt expressions of anti-Semitic speech and vitriol against Israel by party members and supporters.
Corbyn, who has acknowledged his party’s anti-Semitism problem but also appeared to downplay its severity, “personally needed to act faster and go much further” in tackling anti-Semitism in the party, Cox told The Independent last month.—With JTA