Australia PM: New Zealand mosque gunman was Australian right-wing ‘terrorist’
The gunman who killed numerous worshippers in a New Zealand mosque on Friday was a right-wing “terrorist” with Australian citizenship, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.
“We stand here and condemn, absolutely the attack that occurred today by an extremist, right-wing, violent terrorist,” Morrison told a press conference.
He confirmed media reports that the gunman who mowed down worshippers in the main mosque in the southern New Zealand city of Christchurch was an Australian-born citizen.
I condemn the violent, extremist, right-wing terrorist attack that has stolen the lives of so many innocent New Zealanders as they went about their peaceful practice of worship at their mosques in Christchurch today.— Scott Morrison (@ScottMorrisonMP) March 15, 2019
He said Australian security authorities were investigating any links between the country and the attack, but declined to provide further details about the Australian gunman. An emotional Morrison offered his sympathies to Kiwis.
“We are not just allies, we are not just partners, we are family,” he said. New Zealand police said they had detained three men and one woman after attacks on two Christchurch mosques, but they have not provided their identities.
“It is such a sad and devastating reminder of the evil that can be ever present about us,” Morrison said of the attacks.