three arrested, including live-stream video of horrific shootings by gunman from Australia
By Alameen Templeton
The Ummah worldwide is reeling from a gunman’s live-streamed attack on three Masaajid in New Zealand capital Christchurch that left 49 Muslims martyred.
Forty eight others, including children, are under surgery for gunshot wounds in hospital and it is feared the number of fatalities may rise. Other injured worshippers were taken to nearby clinics.
Police have arrested three people, including the apparent gunman, who identified himself as Australian-born Brenton Tarrant.
The live-stream video shows the gunman entering a mosque on Deans Avenue, Christchurch carrying a semi-automatic weapon. He starts firing even before entering the Masjid and proceeds to mow down worshippers preparing for esha salaah. The gunman mercilessly fires repeated rounds into anyone he meets and returns to the salaat area to shoot even more before the video suddenly ends.
He or possible accomplices are believed to have then visited two other Masaajid and continued the attack.
Christchurch policy says they’ve charged a 28-year-old man, believed to be Tarrant, with murder.
Neither he nor two others in custody were on any terror watchlists. A fourth person arrested on was not related to the events, police say.
Christchurch Hospital’s 12 operating theaters are working flat out as some of the injured suffered multiple surgeries.
Anxious relatives are gathered outside Christchurch Hospital, seeking news of family members. The gunman is believed to have been arrested in a car which had explosives and guns inside.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern calls the murders – the worst in New Zealand history – as the country’s “darkest day”.
On Friday night rain was falling on lit candles, handwritten notes and flowers set against a lamppost at the police cordon just down the road from the Linwood Mosque which was also attacked.
President of the NZ Muslim Association, Ikhlaq Kashkari has thanked police and urged New Zealand to
come together at this time.
He urged all New Zealanders in nearby areas to donate blood and to stay calm and united.
“We cannot allow these types of people to divide our community,” he added.
Speaking to Markaz Sahaba Online radio, Kashkari said the ummah in Christchurch had been swamped with offers of support and help from the non-Muslim community.
Muslims had been settled in New Zealand for more than 150 years and traditionally enjoyed peaceful and cooperative relations with the wider community, he said.