Chicago Muslim groups step up security after New Zealand mosque attacks

The death toll from the worst attack directed at Muslims in the West in modern times stood Saturday at 49More

The death toll from the worst attack directed at Muslims in the West in modern times stood Saturday at 49More

The attacks, carried out at two mosques, left 49 dead while several injured.

He live-streamed footage of himself going room-to-room, victim to victim, shooting the wounded from close range as they struggled to crawl away in the main Christchurch mosque.

United States President Donald Trump expressed solidarity with New Zealand but dismissed concerns on rising white nationalism in the wake of the Christchurch attack, AFP reported. We are family. We are friends.

At first, Mr Taylor and his colleagues had no idea what was happening, initially believing the alarms, sirens and general panic sweeping through the New Zealand city were signs of another quake, similar to the 6.2-level seismic disaster that destroyed massive swathes of the city in 2011. In fact, right now, I'm sure New Zealand would like me to share a message on their behalf too.

"Fijian hearts are breaking for our brothers and sisters in New Zealand - a place where an atrocity of this nature is shocking nearly beyond comprehension".

"There is more love than hate, so it is important to find the love now", he added.

He said New Zealand, with a population of just under 5 million, had an estimated 1.5 million firearms.

New Zealand's stricken residents reached out to Muslims in their neighbourhoods and around the country on Saturday.

Officials said that he had no criminal history in New Zealand or Australia and, as with the other two peolpe detained in connection with the attack, had not drawn the attention of the intelligence community for extremist views.

"Our investigations are in their early stages and we will be looking closely to build a picture of any of the individuals involved and all of their activities prior to this horrific event", Police Commissioner Mike Bush said.

"As people walked up, you could see in their eyes that they were looking at somebody standing outside their mosque, thinking "Oh no, is this some kind of protest or whatever".

It was a place that many came to for its safety, a place where they were free to practise their culture and their religion.

"Many communities will be understandably concerned and local officers will be out and about providing reassurance and protective security advice to communities, places of worship and businesses".

Ardern said security agencies had been looking at the rise in New Zealand of "extreme right-wing violent rhetoric", but Tarrant, an Australian citizen, was not on any watchlist in New Zealand or Australia. "We will do whatever we can to help them heal and rise above this awful tragedy".

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' Pacific Area Presidency also released a statement of support for Muslim communities and all others impacted by the Christchurch shootings.

The Palestinian Foreign Ministry said Saturday that at least four Palestinians were among those killed, but acknowledged they could have been counted by Jordan or other countries.

Our thoughts and our prayers are with those who have been impacted today. "We pray for all New Zealanders and our muslim brothers and sisters throughout the world".

A friend of Wasseim's, Carolyne Phillips, who was at the hospital with him, said he had undergone surgery for a perforated bowel, a wound to his pelvis and to get shrapnel and bone out of his hip socket. Photo: Copyright 2018 The Associated Press.

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