Forty-nine people have been killed and at least 20 others injured in shootings during Friday prayers at two mosques in New Zealand city of Christchurch. New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told a news conference that the mosque shootings appeared to be a well-planned “terrorist attack”, describing the incident as one of New Zealand’s “darkest days”.
The prime minister also said two explosive devices attached to suspect vehicles were found and were disarmed. The mosques on target were the Masjid Al Noor in central Christchurch and another one in suburban Linwood.
One gunman live-streamed footage of his rampage to Facebook, filmed with a head-mounted camera. The footage showed him firing indiscriminately at men, women and children from close range inside the Al-Noor mosque. Police called on the public not to share the “extremely distressing” footage online.
A man in his late twenties was charged with murder and will appear in court on Saturday morning. Police Commissioner Mike Bush said two other men and one woman were detained nearby and firearms seized. He said one of those detained was later released, while officers were working to understand if the other two were connected.