New Zealand Holds Memorial Ceremony for Mosque Attack Victims

Mar 31, 2019, 03:17
New Zealand Holds Memorial Ceremony for Mosque Attack Victims

Kensington Palace have announced that the future King will be visiting New Zealand on behalf of the Queen in late April to honour the victims of the Christchurch mosques terrorist attack.

A man who lost his wife in the attack addressed the gathering.

A survivor of the mosque terror attacks has told a large gathering in Christchurch that he forgives the gunman who committed the atrocity.

Ardern has led efforts to support New Zealand's small, tightly-knit Muslim community in the wake of the attack.

The ceremony coincides with remembrance gatherings around New Zealand which are taking coverage of the Christchurch event via big screens.

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British singer Yusuf Islam, previously known as Cat Stevens, will perform with other local musicians including Marlon Williams and Hollie Smith.

Mr Morrison said it was overwhelming and "deeply moving" to hear the names of the 50 people who were killed in the mass shooting earlier this month.

As distant but audible helicopters hovered overhead and pairs of police officers patrolled occasionally through the crowd, the ceremony opened with a traditional Maori call of welcome to the official party, headed by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. "And so to each of us as we go from here, we have work to do", she said. "Then I came here and was met with a simple greeting - as-salamu alaykum, peace be upon you", said Ardern.

Globally, there was a 33 per cent increase in the number of applications to live and work in New Zealand.

"He was a really nice man", the daughters said, evoking palpable sympathy and some silent tears.

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"The visit will be another sign that this nation will always stand with those affected by the terror attacks, and the people of Christchurch", Ardern said.

The suspect in the attack, identified as 28-year-old Australian national Brenton Tarrant, was detained and has been since charged with murder and put into custody.

The service was broadcast around the country.

Thousands more were expected to attend a service at Auckland's Eden Park on Friday afternoon.

Muslim volunteers, some of whom had travelled from Australia and Asia, handed out pamphlets with information about Islam as crowds left the park after the service.

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Act Party leader David Seymour described it as a "rushed process" that would "deny the public the chance to have their say". "Let's keep being that light in stormy waters for the rest of the world to see how it's done".