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New Zealand mosque shootings: Here’s what we know now

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New Zealand mosque shootings: Here’s what we know now


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Many people were killed in a mass shooting at a mosque in the New Zealand city of Christchurch on Friday, a witness said.
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Shootings at two mosques in the New Zealand city of Christchurch on Friday have resulted in at least 49 fatalities, the detention of four suspects and a warning from authorities that the danger may not be over.

In the hours after news of the tragedy broke, video also surfaced of a gunman opening fire inside one of the mosques

Authorities say the attacks happened at two mosques in the city but urged caution across the nation.

Who are the suspects?

Police did not confirm the suspects’ identities, other than saying three males and one female had been detained as of Friday night, local time. One of the suspects has been charged with murder. Authorities did not rule out the possibility of other suspects, and said none of the detained had been on any watch list.

A man who claimed responsibility for the shootings left an anti-immigrant manifesto and said he was a 28-year-old white Australian and a racist. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed that one of the four people detained was an Australian-born citizen.

Attack live-streamed

A 17-minute video posted to social media shows a gunman opening fire in the Masjid Al Noor mosque, an apparent livestream of the attack from a helmet camera.

It shows him arming himself  and walking into the mosque, immediately shooting a person in the doorway.

In an over 70-page manifesto posted to various sites including Twitter and Scribd that appeared to belong to the gunman, he identified himself as a 28-year-old white man born in Australia and listed white nationalist heroes.

How many people were killed?

Friday evening local time, authorities said at least 40 people were killed and 20 more were seriously injured. 

Where did the shootings happen?

Police have confirmed two shooting locations: One at Linwood Avenue and one at Deans Avenue in the city. 

Witness Len Peneha reported seeing a gunman enter Masjid Al Noor mosque on Deans Avenue at about 1:45 p.m.

Police also said there was a second shooting at the Linwood Masjid Mosque.

What have witnesses said?

Len Peneha, a witness of the Masjid Al Noor shooting who lives next to the mosque, said he saw a man dressed in black enter the building. He reported hearing dozens of shots, followed by people running from the mosque in terror.

When he later went to the mosque to help, he reported finding carnage inside: “I saw dead people everywhere. There were three in the hallway, at the door leading into the mosque, and people inside the mosque,” he said. 

Near the Linwood Masjid Mosque shooting, Mark Nichols reported hearing about five gunshots, the New Zealand Herald reports. Nichols said he saw two injured people being carried out on stretchers past his automotive shop and that both people appeared to be alive.

When was the last mass shooting in New Zealand?

Mass shooting events are rare in New Zealand, the Guardian reports. The last one occurred in 1990 and claimed 13 lives in addition to the killer, the publication says.

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Contributing: Kristin Lam, USA TODAY; Associated Press

Read or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2019/03/15/christchurch-new-zealand-shootings-mosques/3171204002/

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