‘Islamopobic’ attack in Whitechapel after New Zealand mosque massacre

Cheryl Sanders
March 16, 2019

The gunman who perpetrated fatal shootings at two mosques in New Zealand meant to continue his attack when he was apprehended by the law enforcement, the country's Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, said on Saturday.

An Aberdeen man who fled for his life after chaos erupted all around him in the wake of the New Zealand terrorist attack said he fell into a "complete panic" soon after the shooting began.

28-year-old gunman Brenton Tarrant, an Australian-born white man identified as a "an extremist, right-wing, violent terrorist, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said".

Tarrant's manifesto, which decries a "white genocide", had clear echoes of Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik, who killed 77 people including schoolchildren attending a summer camp in 2011.

His court-appointed lawyer made no application for bail or name suppression.

New Zealand has a proud record of tolerance and integration, and under Ardern has boosted its annual refugee quota from 1,000 to 1,500 beginning next year. Tarrant, charged with one count of murder, will remain in custody until his next court appearance on April 5. In addition to the dead, she said more than 20 people were seriously wounded.

Labelling the attack as an act of terrorism, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has vowed to reform the country's gun laws.

An unidentified man wrestled a gun from the hands of the man involved in the terror attack in New Zealand and prevented further deaths, according to witnesses. The social media platform removed the video and removed the suspect's accounts. In a 74-page hate-filled manifesto published a few days before the massacre, purportedly written by Tarrant, he said he wanted demonstrate that "nowhere in the world is safe".

In other online forums, people discussed Muslim food restrictions as they prepared to drop off meals for those affected.

Police increased patrols at London mosques and offered safety advice on Friday over fears of a copycat attack after the white supremacist attack in New Zealand, wich left 49 people dead.

The video footage showed a man driving to the mosque, entering it and shooting randomly at people inside. Police said the alleged shooter was arrested in a auto, which was carrying improvised explosive devices, 36 minutes after they were first called.

King Salman described the attack as a "heinous massacre" that "underlines the responsibility of the worldwide community to confront the rhetoric of hatred and terrorism". Health officials said 48 other people were being treated at Christchurch Hospital for gunshot wounds. Armed police were deployed at several locations in all cities, unusual in a country that has had low levels of gun violence. "There were two other firearms in the vehicle that the offender was in and it absolutely was his intention to continue with his attack", she told reporters.

A complex and comprehensive investigation into the attack was underway, Ardern pointed out.

Ardern said Tarrant was a licensed gun owner who had legally bought the five guns used in the crimes.

Military-style semi-automatic rifles, banned in neighboring Australia, are permitted in New Zealand but must be registered.

Police stand guard at Christchurch Hospital. As New Zealand has stood by us so we stand shoulder to shoulder with them, and with Muslims in New Zealand, here in the United Kingdom and around the world.

"I want to send our condolences to those impacted by the heinous attacks in New Zealand", Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders said in a statement released Friday.

Other reports by iNewsToday