A number of individuals have been killed in mass shootings at two mosques full of individuals attending Friday prayers, as New Zealand police warned individuals to remain indoors as they tried to find out if multiple gunman was concerned.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described it as “one among New Zealand’s darkest days” and mentioned the occasions within the metropolis of Christchurch represented “a rare and unprecedented act of violence.”

One particular person was taken into custody however it was unclear if there have been different individuals concerned, Police Commissioner Mike Bush mentioned. He mentioned anyone who was considering of going to a mosque wherever in New Zealand on Friday ought to keep put.

Authorities haven’t mentioned who they’ve in custody. However a person who claimed duty for the shootings left a 74-page anti-immigrant manifesto by which he defined who he was and his reasoning for his actions. He mentioned he thought-about it a terrorist assault.

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Ardern at her information convention alluded to anti-immigrant sentiment because the doable motive, saying that whereas many individuals affected by the shootings could also be migrants or refugees “they’ve chosen to make New Zealand their dwelling, and it’s their dwelling. They’re us. The one that has perpetuated this violence towards us shouldn’t be.”

Authorities haven’t but mentioned how many individuals have been killed and wounded. “It is a very severe and grave state of affairs,” Bush mentioned.

The deadliest capturing occurred on the Masjid Al Noor mosque in central Christchurch at about 1:45 p.m.

Witness Len Peneha mentioned he noticed a person wearing black enter the mosque after which heard dozens of photographs, adopted by individuals working from the mosque in terror.

Peneha, who lives subsequent door to the mosque, mentioned the gunman ran out of the mosque, dropped what seemed to be a semi-automatic weapon in his driveway, and fled.

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Peneha mentioned he then went into the mosque to try to assist.

“I noticed useless individuals in all places. There have been three within the hallway, on the door main into the mosque, and other people contained in the mosque,” he mentioned. “It is unbelievable nutty. I do not perceive how anybody may do that to those individuals, to anybody. It is ridiculous.”

He mentioned he helped about 5 individuals get well in his dwelling. He mentioned one was barely injured.

“I’ve lived subsequent door to this mosque for about 5 years and the persons are nice, they’re very pleasant,” he mentioned. “I simply do not perceive it.”

He mentioned the gunman was white and was sporting a helmet with some sort of gadget on high, giving him a military-type look.

Police mentioned there was a second capturing on the Linwood Masjid Mosque.

Mark Nichols informed the New Zealand Herald he heard about 5 gunshots and {that a} Friday prayer-goer returned fireplace with a rifle or shotgun.

Nichols mentioned he noticed two injured individuals being carried out on stretchers previous his automotive store and that each individuals seemed to be alive.

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The person who claimed duty for the capturing mentioned he was 28-year-old white Australian who got here to New Zealand solely to plan and practice for the assault. He mentioned he was not a member of any group, however had donated to and interacted with many nationalist teams, although he acted alone and no group ordered the assault.

He mentioned the mosques in Christchurch and Linwood can be the targets, as would a 3rd mosque within the city of Ashburton if he may make it there.

He mentioned he selected New Zealand due to its location, to indicate that even essentially the most distant components of the world weren’t freed from “mass immigration.”

Mass shootings in New Zealand are exceedingly uncommon. The deadliest in trendy historical past occurred within the small city of Aramoana in 1990, when gunman David Grey shot and killed 13 individuals following a dispute with a neighbor.

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Perry reported from Wellington.

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