Mosque attacker in Christchurch an Australian citizen: Australian PM
17 March, 2019, 00:12
"We have one person in custody but we are unsure if there are other people". At least 20 people were wounded and a further 49 killed in shootings in Christchurch.
New Zealand Police provided an update on the investigation, announcing that evacuations had been ordered at a residence in the city of Dunedin.
Police Commissioner Mike Bush said 49 people had been killed at two mosques and one man in his late 20s charged with murder.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern called the attack "one of New Zealand's darkest days".
Meanwhile, police said later that not one but a total of four people, three men and a woman, were in custody following an "active shooter situation" at two mosques, and more could be still at large.
The local police department also noted that improvised explosive devices had been found inside a vehicle they stopped after the shooting adding that all mosques in the country have been asked to shut their doors.
Ms Ardern said in a press conference that the country's gun laws would change in the wake of the attack.
"1.3 billion Muslims have collectively been blamed for any act of terror".
"I also pay tribute to the emergency services and volunteers who are providing support to those who have been injured".
The Bishop of Ripon, Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, who was formerly Bishop of Waikato in the Church of Aotearoa, New Zealand, and Polynesia, said on Friday morning: "In some ways, there is a disbelief - there are no words, really".
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker tweeted that he learned of the attack "with horror and profound sadness".
"The European Union will always stand with #NewZealand and against those who heinously want to destroy our societies and our way of life", he wrote. Sorry for the Muslims senselessly murdered in their mosque.
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The head of British counter terror police said that United Kingdom officers will "stand together" with Muslim communities in Christchurch, ensuring that security is heightened across the country.
Safder said they may step up security after this attack.
"It is clear that this can now only be described as a terrorist attack, " Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said, noting that numerous victims could be migrants or refugees.
Of the victims, she said: "I will have been amongst other members of the public who will have seen the footage as the injured were being brought to Christchurch A&E and you certainly can see from that footage there is a real range of ages there".
The killings were condemned by political and Islamic leaders across Asia.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed the shooter was Australian and described him as an "extremist, right-wing, violent terrorist".
The independent Queensland senator also tweeted: "Does anyone still dispute the link between Muslim immigration and violence?". "My heart goes out to all the New Zealand families..."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the attacks a "brazen act of terror".
"Just heard the news. It unites us against extremism, hatred and terrorism, which knows no religion". An attack on a second mosque in the city not long after killed several more.
Moreover, Christchurch mayor Lianne Dalziel said she was "shocked beyond words" by the shootings.
"I honestly can't believe that somebody I have probably had daily dealings with and had shared conversations and interacted with would be capable of something to this extreme", Gray told the news outlet.
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ASSOCIATED PRESSA men places flowers at a makeshift memorial near the Masjid Al Noor mosque in Christchurch , New Zealand . After going back outside and shooting a woman there, he gets back in his vehicle , where a song can be heard blasting.
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