New Zealand pledges reforms as relaxed gun laws scrutinized

Clay Curtis
March 16, 2019

Men and women from the New Zealand Muslim Association in Auckland flew to Christchurch to assist with the funeral rites, washing the bodies, wrapping them in white cloth and taking them to the cemetery.

"But in doing so, it was an attack on all peace loving peoples, on all innocent peoples".

Nine people from India or of Indian origin have gone missing, the Indian envoy in New Zealand has said.

Mr Morrison also announced the government will censure Queensland senator Fraser Anning over his comments about the mosque shootings. For many, this may not have been the place they were born. In the Australian Parliament also.

The gunman behind the massacre of 49 people in two New Zealand mosques flashed a white power sign during a brief court appearance on Saturday, but he was not on any terrorist watch-list and appeared to have no criminal history.

The unprecedented shootings have been confirmed as an act of terror by NZ's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Instead of a city that is easy to divide, Christchurch has proved calm and united in the immediate wake of the attack.

"New Zealanders love us", said one man at the hospital, an Afghan refugee and survivor of the attack. Authorities were working to find out how he had obtained the weapons and a license, and how he was able to enter the country to carry out the attack, she said.

Mass shootings and violent crime are rare in New Zealand, a country of almost 5 million people.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said hatred and violence have no place in diverse and democratic societies, and expressed India's solidarity with the people of New Zealand at this hard time.

I'd be lying if I were to say that I was shocked.

He said New Zealand, with a population of just under 5 million, had an estimated 1.5 million firearms. He spent more than two minutes inside the Al Noor mosque spraying terrified worshippers with bullets, coldly executing some people he'd already mowed down, before calmly reloading and even swapping rifles.

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"We still love this country", said Ibrahim Abdul Halim, imam of Linwood Mosque, vowing that extremists would "never ever touch our confidence".

"We're hoping that wouldn't prevent our community from coming to the mosques and feeling safe practising their religion".

The gunman then walks back into the mosque, where there are at least two dozen people lying on the ground.

"The offender was mobile, there were two other firearms in the vehicle that the offender was in, and it absolutely was his intention to continue with his attack", Ardern told reporters in Christchurch. She said the shooter had five guns, two of them semi-automatic. Police have warned the public that sharing the video is an offence and social media companies have said they are trying to scrub it from their platforms.

Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, today faced court in New Zealand.

Locals lay flowers in tribute to those killed and injured at Deans Avenue near the Al Noor Mosque.

During the Saturday morning hearing, a man who was not in court was charged with using writings to incite hatred against a race or ethnicity, but it was not clear if his case was related to the mosque attacks.

He did not speak, but was looking around particularly at the media present.

CHRISTCHURCH, March 16 ― The main suspect in New Zealand's worst peacetime mass shooting meant to continue the rampage before he was caught by police, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today.

Her fellow countrymen seemed to want to prove her right by volunteering acts of kindness.

Leaders across the world, including Queen Elizabeth, British Prime Minister Theresa May, Pope Francis and United States president Donald Trump have sent condolences and condemned the attack.

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