“The death toll in the attack on two mosques in Christchurch has reached 40 people and 20 wounded,” CNN quoted New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden as saying, adding that 30 people were killed in a mosque and 10 were killed in the other mosque.
Jacinda Arden said the incident could only be described as a terrorist, that the suspects had “hard-line views” and security forces found explosives in a car they had stopped being believed to belong to the suspects.
Police say they have four people- three men and one woman -in custody but can’t guarantee there aren’t other offenders. “Let’s not assume the danger is gone,” New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush said, adding that it’s possible the danger is not contained in the city alone. He also said there were a “significant number” of fatalities, but wouldn’t offer a concrete number at this point.
Bush said the army dismantled explosive devices found in suspect vehicles.
There have been two shooting incidents so far: one at the Al Noor Mosque next to Hagley Park, and another at the Linwood Mosque in the suburb of Linwood.