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Biden expected to press for gun reform as he visits scene of mass shooting in Buffalo.

US president Joe Biden is expected to press for reform of gun laws in the wake of the mass shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo in upstate New York on Saturday in which ten people were killed.

He is also likely to describe the attack on the supermarket in a part of Buffalo which has a large black population as “terrorism motivated by a hateful and perverse ideology that tears at the soul of our nation”.

Police in New York state are treating the murders in Buffalo as a racially motivated hate crime.

The president will visit the scene of the murders in Buffalo along with the first lady Jill Biden on Tuesday. He will meet with the families of victims of the attack as well as police, first responders and community leaders.

The president is expected to call on the US congress to take steps to keep “weapons of war” of the streets.

He is also likely to urge that measures be introduced to prevent guns getting into the hands of criminals and people with serious mental illness.

He is also expected to urge Americans “to give hate no safe harbour, and to reject the lies of racial animus that radicalise, divide us, and led to the act of racist violence we saw on Saturday that took the lives of 10 of our countrymen”.

Reforms

The White House said on Monday at a briefing that the president was likely to continue to press for gun reforms.

“Our country is facing an epidemic on gun violence that is costing lives every day. We saw that in Buffalo, as we’re talking about, and in examples every day that might not make the news but tear up families and communities. This is a top priority for the president, and has been throughout his career.”

Police suggested on Monday that the man accused of the mass shooting in Buffalo had planned further attacks.

Buffalo police commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said on Monday that the 18-year-old suspect had spoken “about possibly going to another store” after carrying out the shooting at the Tops grocery outlet.

“It appeared that his plans were to drive out of here and then continue driving down Jefferson Avenue, looking to shoot more black people, as he put it.”

The suspect, identified in court as Payton Gendron of Conklin, New York, pleaded not guilty on Saturday evening to first-degree murder, a charge that could lead to life imprisonment without parole.

Police believe that the suspect travelled about 320km from his home town near Binghamton in New York state with the intention of carrying out murders in east Buffalo.

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