A terrorist attack in New Zealand’s Christchurch has left 49 people dead and at least 48 wounded. The attacks occurred at two locations: Al Noor Mosque and Linwood Mosque, which are approximately three miles apart.
According to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, 41 people have been killed at Al Noor and another 7 perished at Linwood Mosque, another died at Christchurch Hospital, while dozens of victims are being treated for gunshot wounds at various local hospitals.
Two men and a woman who are alleged conspirators of the attack have been taken into custody by the New Zealand police.#Terroristattack #Newzealandpolice #Australianterrorist #Facebook https://t.co/6mHMGShNW0— Daily Times (@dailytimespak) March 15, 2019
The New Zealand Police are reporting that four people, three men, and one woman, have been taken into custody in connection with the attacks. None of the suspects were on security watch lists but all hold extremist views. One of the gunmen posted live footage on social media of the attack as it unfolded. It appears that the camera was strapped to his head.
Mike Bush, New Zealand’s police commissioner, has warned people to stay away from mosques this Friday and for mosques to close their doors until further notice, according to the New York Times.
The country has been placed on its highest security threat level.
Facebook said Friday it had “quickly” removed a live video from the suspected gunman in twin mosque shootings that killed at least 49 people in New Zealand.
The 28-year-old shooter, who has been arrested, published a racist manifesto on Twitter before livestreaming his rampage showing him repeatedly shooting at worshipers from close range.
“Police alerted us to a video on Faceook shortly after the livestream commenced and we quickly removed both the shooter’s Facebook and Instragram accounts and the video,” the social network said.
Powerful words by the prime ministers of New Zealand & Australia after the terror attack. They are vivid examples of how real leaders address these types of national tragedies — compassionate, healing words for victims & families. pic.twitter.com/F6qrSWglDK #ChristchurchShooting— Bill Bratton (@CommissBratton) March 15, 2019
“We’re also removing any praise or support for the crime and the shooter or shooters as soon as we’re aware.”
The Facebook Live video, taken with a camera that appeared to be mounted on the gunman’s body, shows a clean-shaven, Caucasian man with short hair driving to the Masjid al Noor mosque in central Christchurch.
He enters the building and fires repeatedly at worshipers as he moves from room to room.
AFP determined the video was genuine through a digital investigation that included matching screenshots of the mosque taken from the gunman’s footage with images available online showing the same areas.