New Zealand PM's office received shooter's 'manifesto' minutes before attack


A suspect in the mass shootings at two New Zealand mosques on Friday appeared in court on Saturday and was charged with murder.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks to the media on March 16 in Christchurch, New Zealand.

It is customary in Islam to bury the dead within 24 hours but no bodies have been released because of the investigation, police said.

Hassan said his own family was alive but that some of his friends were looking for their parents. - AP A woman paying her respects to the victims of the attack at a makeshift memorial near the Masjid Al Noor mosque, Saturday, March 16, 2019, Christchurch, New Zealand.

He's accused of killing 41 people at one mosque and seven more at a second.

Aziz, originally from Afghanistan, said he picked up one of the gunman's discarded weapons and threatened the man, who drove off.

Tarrant was arrested in a vehicle, which police said was carrying improvised explosive devices, 36 minutes after they were first called.

Tarrant was not known to the authorities, Bush said, and had no previous convictions.

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.

He said up to 70 people were praying inside Linwood when gunshots were heard. "More importantly it was also about standing in solidarity in a small way to offer their love and support to the people of Christchurch".

Ardern said she had spoken with Trump, who asked how he could help. "It's so see him just gunned down by someone who didn't care about anyone or anything". Then he went to the mosque as usual.

United in grief New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern with Muslim community representatives
Camera Icon United in grief New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern with Muslim community

He said they were praying "to our God of all peoples and of all cultures for peace, tolerance and good will".

The victims of Friday's shooting included immigrants from Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Indonesia, and Malaysia. "I am very sorry to miss your calls and text messages.I am really tired.please pray for my son, me and my daughter.I am just posting this video to show you that I am fully ok", said Wasseim Alsati, who was reportedly shot three times.

The royal couples have both visited Christchurch on separate visits to New Zealand before.

The office of New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern said on Saturday that it received a copy of a 74-page "manifesto" from the 28-year-old gunman Brenton Harrison Tarrant, less than 10 minutes before the assault began at the mosques on Friday.

Questions have been raised about why Tarrant had not appeared on a watchlist of New Zealand or Australian security agencies.

Ardern told the briefing that she had been contacted by Facebook operations chief Sheryl Sandberg who had acknowledged what had happened.

In contrast, President Donald Trump has repeatedly told mourning Americans in the wake of shootings that stricter gun control would make the country more risky, not less.

Business Standard reports that Tarrant allegedly used "two semi-automatic rifles, two shotguns and a lever-action weapon".

All of the guns Tarrant used during the attack were purchased legally, according to gun laws and restrictions in New Zealand.

There are an estimated 1.5 million firearms in New Zealand, which has a population of only 5 million, but it has had low levels of gun violence.

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