Christchurch mosque terror attacks day 9: What you need to know

2:54 pm on 23 March 2019

A week and a day has passed since the terror attack on two mosques in Christchurch.

Kilbirnie Mosque

Kilbirnie Mosque Photo: RNZ / Rebekah Parsons-King

Here's what you need to know today

The Muslim community is being allowed back into mosques where the shootings occurred.

A 'March for Love' will start in North Hagley Park from 10am Saturday in Christchurch in memory of the 50 victims of the mosque shootings.

After a speech from the mayor, a Muslim prayer and performances, the march will wind its way along Rolleston Avenue to the wall of flowers and then back to the park.

There will be thanks to the community at Mount Roskill mosque in Auckland today with speeches from mayor Phil Goff and Jacinda Ardern. It will run from 11.45am to 1:45pm.

Vigils an commemorations this weekend

  • An anti-Islamophobia rally, Kia Kaha Aotearoa: Stand Against Racism, will be held at Aotea Square in Auckland at 2pm on Sunday, 24 March.
  • More than 2000 people have indicated they will attend the Christchurch March for Love, which will start at North Hagley Park at 10am on Saturday, 23 March.
  • Remember Those Who Lost Their Lives 15-3-19 will be held at 5pm on Sunday, 24 March at North Hagley Park.

If you know of an event that is not included on this list, please email us at webnews@rnz.co.nz

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Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

Yesterday, tens of thousands of New Zealanders gathered throughout the country to show solidarity with the Muslim community.

The Muslim call to prayer was broadcast widely, including on RNZ, from opposite the Al Noor Mosque, followed by a two-minute's silence.

And there was a mass funeral for 26 of the victims at Memorial Park Cemetery yesterday afternoon.

What happened?

A lone gunman opened fire at two Christchurch mosques on 15 March. One attack was at the Al Noor Mosque next to Hagley Park, and one at the Linwood mosque.

Fifty people died, seven at Linwood mosque and 42 at Al Noor Mosque. One person died later.

The dead include a five-year-old girl and her father, who were chased by the gunman and shot in front of horrified passers-by.

Fifty people were injured.

The national security threat level has been increased from low to high for the first time in New Zealand's history.

Who has been charged?

Brenton Tarrant, 28, has been charged with murder, and more charges are likely. He has been remanded in custody until 5 April when he will appear in the high court.

What is happening now?

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has announced a ban on all military-style semi-automatic weapons and assault rifles.

However, lobbyists are expected to fight hard to water down the proposed firearm reforms.

Some New Zealanders who own semi-automatic weapons have begun voluntarily handing their firearms over to police for destruction.

Police said people should go to the police website for information about handing in weapons.

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People write messages of support for the massacre victims on a wall in downtown Auckland. Photo: RNZ

Essential contacts

Victim Support has set up a Givealittle page for victims and their families following the attack. By 9am today it had raised almost $7.8 million.

Those who have a missing family member are urged to go to the Restoring Family Links (RFL) website, where they can register missing persons or register themselves as alive.

Missing persons can also be registered on 0800 115 019. A member of the police will be in contact thereafter.

Police launched a Tell Police form on their website for anyone who wants to give them information on the attacks.

Need to Talk? Free call or text 1737 any time to speak to a trained counsellor, for any reason.

Lifeline: 0800 543 354 or text HELP to 4357

Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508 828 865 / 0508 TAUTOKO (24/7). This is a service for people who may be thinking about suicide, or those who are concerned about family or friends.

Depression Helpline: 0800 111 757 (24/7) or text 4202

Samaritans: 0800 726 666 (24/7)

Youthline: 0800 376 633 (24/7) or free text 234 (8am-12am), or email talk@youthline.co.nz

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