Published: Sun, March 17, 2019
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

New Zealand rocked by mass shooting

New Zealand rocked by mass shooting

Forty-nine people are dead after gunmen opened fire on two Christchurch mosques. One of the suspects has been charged with murder.

A second shooting took place at the Linwood Masjid Mosque, killing at least 10 people.

At least 49 people were killed and more than 20 seriously injured, according to police.

Ambulance crews were filmed taking the injured away from the scene of the shooting at a mosque in Christchurch. Part of the attack which took place at Al Noor Mosque was broadcast live. After spending more than two minutes inside the mosque spraying people with bullets, the gunman then walks outside to the street, where he shoots at people on the sidewalk.

A witness said she heard gunshots at the Linwood mosque at 1.45pm.

On Saturday, the prime minister said the "primary perpetrator" in the shootings was a licensed gun owner and legally acquired the five guns used.

Police have three people in custody, and one of those people is charged with murder.

Entitled "The Great Replacement", the 74-page manifesto said the gunman - who identified himself as an Australia-born, 28-year-old white male from a low-income, working-class family - had wanted to attack Muslims.

He was not previously on any terror or police watchlists.

Australian citizen Brenton Tarrant is believed to be the key suspect in the Christchurch mosque mass shootings.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern called the shootings a terrorist attack.

"Anyone who has ever lost a loved one, whether it's because of terrorism or not, understands what these families are going to go through", Vanessa Svebakk, a Norwegian who also holds New Zealand citizenship and who lost her 14-year-old daughter in the Utoya attack, told AFP.

Turkey´s foreign minister said two Turks suffered non-life threatening injuries in the attack. "Many of those affected will be members of our migrant communities New Zealand is their home they are us", Ms Ardern said. "The person who has perpetuated this violence against us is not".

She pronounced it "one of New Zealand's darkest days". He also pointed his finger at those who promote religious hatred: "When the flames of hatred are fanned, when people are demonised due to their faith, when people's fears are played on rather than addressed, the consequences are deadly, as we have seen so sadly today", he said.

Extremists around the world have sought to emulate Breivik ever since his deadly attacks in Norway which left 77 people dead in 2011.

Police found two IEDs (improvised explosive devices) under one auto in the city, believed to be the gold Subaru the shooter ws driving. "They've been made safe by the defence force", Bush told reporters.

Attacker Darren Osborne drove a van into pedestrians leaving a Muslim welfare centre near the well-known Finsbury Park Mosque in north London.

AFP determined the video was genuine through a digital investigation that included matching screenshots of the mosque taken from the gunman's footage with multiple images available online showing the same areas.

"New Zealand Police alerted us to a video on Facebook shortly after the livestream commenced and we removed both the shooter's Facebook account and the video".

The prime minister said "what all of us can at least do is make sure we do not share, spread, or actively engage in that message of hate". The game has been cancelled, and the Bangladeshi team will fly home as soon as possible.

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