Mosques targeted by gunfire in New Zealand, multiple fatalities confirmed by police

Governor John Rankin Imam Ashmead Ali and Minister Wayne Caines Bermuda March 15 2019

Witnesses are depicting horrifying scenes from the city of Christchurch, New Zealand on Friday following mass shootings by one or more gunman that occurred at two mosques in the city. People in the city are told to stay indoors.

Peneha, who lives next door to the mosque, said the gunman ran out of the mosque, dropped what appeared to be a semi-automatic weapon in Peneha's driveway, and fled.

The gunman, who was wearing a "helmet, glasses and military-style jacket", is believed to have live streamed the attack to social media.

New Zealand media reported that between nine and 27 people were killed, but the death toll could not be confirmed.

New Zealand police said the shooter is still active, according to a report in AFP.

NZ Police commissioner Mike Bush has confirmed officers have made four arrests in connection to this afternoon's shootings at two mosques in Christchurch.

Earlier, Bush had warned citizens to remain cautious, saying "a serious and evolving situation is occurring in Christchurch with an active shooter". In one report from New Zealand-based outlet TVNZ, they described the situation on the ground as chaotic, with police locking down neighborhoods and schools in the area of the two affected mosques. More information will be added as soon as it becomes available. "The persons who has perpetuated this violence against us. have no place in New Zealand".

Witness Len Peneha told AAP he saw the gunman enter the Al Noor mosque about 1.45pm and heard dozens of gunshots.

"I can see a girl dead in the middle of the road", Ibrahim said in tears.


Jacinda Kate Laurell Ardern, Prime Minister just called the violence unprecedented and New Zealand's darkest hour.

Police did not immediately comment on whether the incident took place in the mosque or nearby.

Returning to the mosque he walked over to a pile of dead or wounded men in the room and began shooting them in the head to ensure they were dead.

Witnesses at the mosque said there were several casualties in the shooting.

New Zealand Police urged anyone in Christchurch to stay indoors and report any suspicious behaviour.

The mosque has capacity to hold more than 300 people.

Muslims account for just over 1 percent of New Zealand's population, a 2013 census showed. Speaking to CNN, the team's coach said their bus had pulled up at the mosque when shooting happened.

This is a developing story, check back for more updates.

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