'Everybody ran to save themselves' - Eye witnesses recount New Zealand Mosque attack

Lamar Ellis
March 17, 2019

New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern on Friday said that shootings at the two mosques in Christchurch could 'only be described as a terrorist attack'.

- A male in his late 20s has been charged with murder and is due to appear at a Christchurch court on Saturday morning.

A gunman broadcast live stream footage on Facebook of the attack on one mosque in the city of Christchurch, mirroring the carnage played out in video games, after publishing a "manifesto" in which he denounced immigrants, calling them "invaders".

One man outside the mosque said that he prayed that the gunman would "run out of bullets".

Brenton Tarrant posted a 73-page manifesto on twitter before he started to kill people, he described them as a terrorist attack. In a statement he said: "Our hearts go out to the people of New Zealand following the news of this bad act in Christchurch".

28-year-old Brenton Tarrant who is from Australia filmed himself going to the mosque while listening to folk music, he also showed around 6 guns lying on the floor of his vehicle.

"New Zealand is one of the most peaceful, peace-loving and generous nations in the world".

Just 1% of New Zealand's population of nearly five million are Muslim, according to government statistics, less than 50,000 people in 2013. Another video, taken by someone else, showed police apprehending the gunman on a pavement by a road.

She added: "Today, at mosques across Scotland and elsewhere, Muslims will attend Friday prayers".

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He did not apply for bail or to have his name suppressed and has been remanded in custody without plea until April 5. He says there is also a heightened police presence around the country, including at mosques and community events.

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Qureshi said that he has made contact with Pakistan's ambassador to New Zealand to gather details of the terror attack.

Bush said police had found two improvised explosive devices in one auto, a clarification from an earlier statement that there were devices in multiple vehicles.

After parking, he took two guns and walked a short distance to the mosque where he opened fire. "I saw lots of broken glass and bricks on the backside of the mosque", he said.

The man who claimed responsibility for the shooting said he came to New Zealand only to plan and train for the attack.

The gunman said he was not a member of any organization, acted alone and chose New Zealand to show that even the most remote parts of the world are not free of "mass immigration".

Home to almost 400,000 people, Christchurch is the largest city on New Zealand's South Island. Ardern, whose party campaigned on the promise of raising the intake of refugees, called the planned increase "the right thing to do".

"What has happened here is an extraordinary and unprecedented act of violence", she said, adding that the attackers have "no place in New Zealand". There will be so many people affected.

The second attack took place at the Linwood mosque about 5 kilometers (3 miles) away.

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