NEW YORK (AA) – The father of the alleged shooter of a massacre in Orlando, Florida, last weekend, on Wednesday blamed the Daesh terrorist group for the death of his son and the victims.
"ISIS is the most dangerous terrorist group on the face of the Earth. This ISIS group should be destroyed," Seddique Mateen said during a press conference while using an alternative name for Daesh.
"I wasn't aware that he went under the effect of this horrible, terrible killer group of ISIS."
He, of course is Omar Mateen, who authorities say opened fire in the early Sunday at a gay nightclub killing 49 victims and shooting nearly one-third of the patrons -- most of whom were from the Latino community.
Reiterating a family apology that was issued hours after the shooting, Seddique said he tried to raise his son to the best of his ability but failed to learn about him being influenced by Daesh.
"My suggestion to the whole nation is, parents should pay attention to their kids. Today my son, tomorrow your son. They shouldn't let the youngster to fall on their [Daesh's] theory, which is killing.
"I'm a victim of terrorism," Seddique said. "If there wasn't for ISIS, I'd have my son today."
Seddique also expressed solidarity with the victims' families, saying, "They are all family."
Three days after the attack, the FBI continues to lead a large-scale investigation into the circumstances that brought about one of the worst terror attacks on U.S. soil.
A focal points has been Mateen's wife, Noor Salman, allegedly telling officials she tried to "talk him out of" carrying out the attack, suggesting that she may have had prior knowledge of the shooting.
Authorities are mulling whether to press charges against Salman, whom Seddique described as "the most sincere, the most wonderful lady I've ever known."
At a press conference Wednesday, officials declined to speculate if charges would be filed but stressed that the probe would be as “exhaustive an investigation as you will find in the United States.”
FBI special agent Ron Hopper said the bureau was restructuring Mateen's movements days and months prior to the attack, vowing to "leave no stone unturned" and that "if someone is able to be charged, we will bring them to justice.”