Published: Sat, March 16, 2019
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

'Terrorist' in New Zealand mosque attack Australian: Australia PM

'Terrorist' in New Zealand mosque attack Australian: Australia PM

He let off volleys from automatic weapons to spray the mosque, scrawling the names of other mass murderers on his deadly firearms.

However, reports later indicated that the death toll in the attacks raised to 49.

Prime minister Scott Morrison has confirmed the man taken in custody over the New Zealand mosque shooting is Australian-born and slammed the attack as "callous, right-wing" terrorism.

He declined to provide further details, saying the investigation was being led by New Zealand authorities. "They are us. The person [or persons] who has perpetuated this violence against us is not".

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According to New Zealand police commissioner Mike Bush, none of the shooters were on any watchlists for suspicious or terrorist-like behaviors.

Grieving members of the public following a shooting at the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, March 15, 2019. Previously, the Aramoana massacre claimed the lives of 13 people in 1990. The gunman live streamed the attack in a confronting video posted to social media.

The shooter, who identified himself on Twitter as "Brenton Tarrant" from Grafton, New South Wales, stormed into Masjid Noor Mosque in Christchurch around 1.40pm local time, gunning down dozens while hundreds of worshipers took part in Friday prayer. Police asked that the link not be shared and wrote on Twitter that they are "working to have any footage removed". In a tweet, YouTube said: "Please know we are working vigilantly to remove any violent footage".

PewDiePie responded to reports that he'd been named in the attack shortly after the news broke.

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Earlier, he helped three people who had been shot at the mosque. "They ran back through Hagley Park back to the Oval", he tweeted. Entire team got saved from active shooters! "When that was happening, one of the players had called me to contact the police".

"Just around the entrance door there were elderly people sitting there praying and he just started shooting at them". "It's unbelievable nutty. I don't understand how anyone could do this to these people, to anyone". Schools were temporarily put on lockdown in the city, which is the largest on the South Island of New Zealand, with a population of about 400,000. "It took nearly half an hour, more than half an hour by the time the ambulance could arrive and I think he must have died".

None of those in custody were on any active security watch lists, either in New Zealand or Australia, Bush said. Police also said a number of improvised explosive devices were discovered on vehicles in the immediate area.

One person has been charged with murder, but police have not confirmed the name of the suspect.

The shooting happened in the afternoon on Friday, the Stuff news outlet reported.

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