Funerals for those killed in NZ shootings held

2019-03-20 at 07:03

A father and son from Syria have been buried in the first funerals for those killed in the New Zealand mosque shootings that left 50 people dead.

Khaled Mustafa, 44, and Hamza, 16, arrived as refugees to New Zealand last year.

Hundreds of mourners gathered at a cemetery near the Linwood Islamic Centre in Christchurch, one of two places of worship targeted last Friday. Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, has been charged with murder.

Islamic tradition calls for bodies to be buried as soon as possible, but the burials have been delayed by the scale of the identification process.

Christchurch city officials issued strict guidance to the media ahead of the funerals and requested that the families be left alone. Police named six of the victims of the shootings at the Al Noor mosque and hoped to release all 50 bodies to the families by the end of the day.

Police said all post-mortem examinations were complete.