Drake is speaking out about the 2015 OVO Fest after party shooting that killed two people, more than a week following the tragedy.
The 28-year-old Canadian rapper made his comments on his October's Very Own blog on Friday in what marked his first public remarks about the attack, which took place on Aug. 4.
"The last few days I have been in a moral bind," he said. "I am used to the fact that my life and the things I say to my fans are closely watched. It's tough in situations like this where there's a tragedy and I consider the advice of my trusted advisors and counsel who worry that anything I might say could be misinterpreted. However, today I am choosing to follow my heart."
"I am plagued and pained by the violence that continues to escalate in our city," Drake added. "I stare into the eyes of so many young people and I wish to see them all shine as bright as they possibly can in this lifetime. I encourage my generation to show as much value and gratitude as you can for the lives we have been gifted."
The shooting victims were Ariela Navarro-Fenoy, 26, and Duvel Hibbert, 23. Three other people were injured in the shooting, which began at a nightclub that hosted an after party for Drake's annual music festival. It is unclear if the rapper was in the venue at the time. No arrests were made and no suspects were named.
My deepest condolences go out to the Navarro-Fenoy and Hibbert families for their loss of Ariela and Duvel," Drake said. "Along with them I send my condolences to all of the families that have lost loved ones to the senseless violence that has and continues to occur in our city."
"Although Toronto is globally viewed as a major city, at the core we are still a small close-knit community, and it is our public responsibility to ensure the safety and wellbeing of one another," he added. "We need each other to further our communities for generations to come. I pray for better times and better understanding."