Emergency responders working at the site of the shoot. Image: ReutersEmergency responders working at the site of the shoot. Image: Reuters

Christchurch mosque attack: 40 dead, 20 seriously injured

40 people have been killed and 20 seriously injured after gunmen opened fire in two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand on Friday afternoon.10 people were killed at Linwood and 30 at the Deans Ave mosque near Hagley Park.

NZ Police first received reports of gunfire at the two mosques Sunday afternoon and immediately responded. For a long time, the situation was ongoing with the attacker ‘inside the mosque’. Hundreds of people attending Friday prayers were caught by surprise – some were able to flee, sadly, many weren’t. Additionally, two improvised explosive devices were found attached to vehicles and were diffused by Defence Force staff.

Four people, three men and one woman were arrested in connection with the case. One of the men was an Australian born national. PM Arden said those in custody had not been on any terrorism watch list: “It’s not a matter of someone having slipped under the radar.” Police are investigating into the incident and are yet to shed light upon the motive(s) behind the attack.

The death toll puts the incident as the ‘worst mass shooting attack’ in New Zealand, a nation where such stories are rarely heard of.

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