Ottawa joins together for vigil after Christchurch attack

Lamar Ellis
March 16, 2019

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 on Saturday (March 16).

Brenton Tarrant, 28, entered no plea when he appeared on Saturday morning in a Christchurch court charged with murder after a terrorist attack on two mosques in the city.

New Zealand's Police Commissioner Mike Bush said four people - three men and a woman - had been taken into custody.

Two other people have been arrested in connection with the terror attack, and they remain in custody as police conduct an ongoing investigation as to their possible involvement. In addition to the dead, she said more than 20 people were seriously wounded.

An Afghan man, thought to be in his 60s or 70s, died after he reportedly ran into the line of fire to save fellow worshippers at the Al Noor mosque in central Christchurch.

Doctors at Christchurch hospital said they worked through the night in 12 operating theatres to do what they could to save the survivors.

Authorities have not specified who they detained, but said none had been on any watch list.

"While work is being done as to the chain of events that led to both the holding of this gun licence and the possession of these weapons, I can tell you one thing right now - our gun laws will change", she said.

In 2011 Breivik massacred 77 people, shooting to death 69 participants in a summer camp on a Norwegian island, and killed eight others by detonating a van bomb in the middle of Oslo.

"He used to tell us life was good in New Zealand and its people are good and welcoming".

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.

"It's been 36 hours, I haven't heard anything about them, " he said. Indeed, the writer claims to have had "brief contact" with Breivik, who he says gave his "blessing" to the Christchurch attack.

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A Turkish offcial said Ankara had also opened an inquiry after it emerged the man had made several visits to Turkey . In a Friday tweet , he also criticized the West for "defending demonization of Muslims as 'freedom of expression'".

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The mother, who has two children in elementary school, says that although we live in a world that relies on technology, there's a time and a place for cellphones.

'And we need to be accepting of everyone, because no matter who they are they are a part of us, ' she said, her father Neil by her side.

Police officers search the area near the Masjid Al Noor mosque, site of one of the mass shootings at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, Saturday, March 16, 2019.

Ardern said the main suspect was a licensed gun owner who used five weapons during his rampage, including two semi-automatic weapons and two shotguns.

A dozen people are still critical and at least one child is among the dead as New Zealand remains in shock and grief after twin shootings at mosques.

Investigative authorities, with their eyes trained elsewhere, are thus entirely in the dark about these networks that actively inspire and recruit individuals to carry out such attacks.

Dozens of people laid flowers at cordons near both mosques in Christchurch, which is still rebuilding after a devastating quake in 2011 that killed nearly 200 people.

The Fijian rugby team also expressed their solidarity with the people of New Zealand after the attacks.

Daoud Nabi had lived in New Zealand for more than 40 years after fleeing Afghanistan as a refugee in the late 1970s, and believed his adopted home to be a "slice of paradise", his son Omar told AFP.

"It makes people panic", Zhong said. Two mosques were targeted in the attack.

The last comparable mass shooting in New Zealand was nearly three decades ago, and the annual murder rate is usually around 50 people for the entire country.

A police auto rammed into his white SUV after it sped away from Linwood, pushing the vehicle up and onto the curb, which allowed officers to drag him onto the pavement at gunpoint.

"But the teachers are struggling to come to terms with the fact that the pupil that they were involved with in Grafton has now been involved in what has happened in Christchurch", Huxley said.

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