New Zealand broadcast the Islamic call to prayer

2019-03-22 at 13:06

New Zealand has broadcast the Islamic call to prayer and observed a two-minute silence in ceremonies to mark a week since the Christchurch attacks.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern joined thousands of mourners near the Al-Noor mosque, one of two places of worship targeted in last Friday’s shootings. She said New Zealand mourns with you.

Imam Gamal Fouda, who led the prayers, said: “We are broken-hearted, but we are not broken.”

Thousands of people have gathered in Hagley Park, near the Al-Noor mosque, to mark today’s national day of reflection for the victims.

The Muslim call to prayer was broadcast on national television and radio and was followed by a two-minute silence.

Many mosques across the country are opening their doors to visitors, and human chains will be formed outside some in symbolic acts of protection and support.

A mass funeral is being held for 30 of the dead, including the youngest victim Mucaad Ibrahim, aged three, who was killed at the Al-Noor mosque.

Government officials worked into the night to prepare the mosque and the bodies of victims for a mass burial in Christchurch later today.

Fifty people were killed and dozens more wounded in the attacks. Australian Brenton Tarrant, a self-proclaimed white supremacist, has been charged with one murder and is expected to face further charges.

Yesterday Ardern announced a ban on all types of semi-automatic weapons.