Accessibility links

Breaking News

Father of Orlando Killer 'Extremely' Upset Over Incident


An undated photo taken from his Facebook page allegedly shows Seddique Mateen, father of Orlando shooter Omar Saddiqui Mateen.
An undated photo taken from his Facebook page allegedly shows Seddique Mateen, father of Orlando shooter Omar Saddiqui Mateen.

The father of Omar Mateen, the man identified as the killer in the Orlando nightclub massacre, says he is "extremely" upset over the incident and has no idea why his son "committed such an act during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan."

"I do not know what caused this. I did not know he had hatred in his heart," Seddique Mateen said.

Self-proclaimed 'Afghan president'

Seddique Mateen, who lives in Florida, is a self-proclaimed revolutionary president of Afghanistan.

He has been addressing the Afghan people through video messages on his Facebook account.

He has appointed a “cabinet” for his revolutionary government and has been issuing “orders” and “policy” related statements via his Facebook page.

“The revolutionary people of Afghanistan, each one of you has the ability to arrest Ashraf [Afghan President Ashraf Ghani], Atmar [Mohammad Hanif Atmar, Afghan national security adviser], Khalilzad [Zalmay Khalilzad, former U.S. ambassador to Kabul] … and rid Afghanistan of their evil acts,” Mateen, dressed in Afghan army garb, said in a Facebook message a few hours before his son killed at least 50 people at the Orlando nightclub.

Watch: Mateen's Latest Message

Mateen's Father Discusses the Pulse Attack
please wait

No media source currently available

0:00 0:01:16 0:00

In his video messages, Mateen has been critical of the Afghan government under President Ashraf Ghani. He says his government will help Afghans get rid of the war and corruption and will guarantee a "prosperous” Afghanistan.

In a video message Saturday, he blamed certain individuals inside the Afghan government who, according to Mateen, are plotting against the people of Afghanistan.

“Atmar is the leader of Da’esh [Islamic State group] who encourages and helps Da’esh expand in Afghanistan, and he offers money to people so that they join Da’esh and destroy the country,” claimed Mateen.

Similarly, he accused former President Hamid Karzai of “leading and orchestrating” the plans and activities of the “Iran and Pakistan-backed” Taliban, who kill and kidnap Afghan people across the country.

Mateen traveled to Mexico on June 5-7 and sent messages to Afghans from a boat cruise. Before departing on the trip, he said he was on an “official” trip.

According to a VOA source who spoke on condition of anonymity, Mateen has established an organization called “Durand Line Jirga” for political and financial purposes.

He organized a gathering of Afghans a few years ago in Northern Virginia. A number of participants objected as Mateen “pursued his own personal agenda,” a participant told VOA on condition of anonymity. “He wanted to establish contacts with U.S. officials and congressmen,” the source said.

Mateen told NBC News that his son’s act had nothing to do with religion. He added that his son was “enraged” when he saw two men kissing a couple of months ago in Miami.

“This has nothing to do with religion. We are saying we are apologizing for the whole incident. We are not aware of any action he is taking,” Mateen said.

Afghan President Ghani and CEO Abdullah Abdullah have strongly condemned the attack. “Targeting civilians is not justifiable under any circumstances whatsoever,” Ghani said in a statement.

Abdullah said “terrorism and terrorists as foes of human being are not representing any faith, religion, ethnicity and race.”