Christchurch, New Zealand — Mass shootings at two mosques full of worshippers attending Friday prayers killed 49 people in what the prime minister said could “only be described as a terrorist attack.” Authorities charged one person, detained three others and defused explosive devices in what appeared to be a carefully planned racist attack.
A video that was apparently livestreamed by the shooter, identified by sources to CBS News as Australian national Brenton Harrison Tarrant, 28, shows the attack in horrifying detail. The gunman spends more than two minutes inside the Masjid Al Noor mosque in central Christchurch, spraying terrified worshippers with bullets again and again, sometimes re-firing at people he has already cut down.He then walks outside to the street, where he shoots at people on the sidewalk. Children’s screams can be heard in the distance as he returns to his car to get another rifle.The gunman then walks back into the mosque, where there are at least two dozen people lying on the ground. After walking back outside and shooting a woman there, he gets back in his car, where the song “Fire” by English rock band “The Crazy World of Arthur Brown” can be heard blasting from the speakers. The singer bellows, “I am the god of hellfire!” and the gunman drives away. The video then cuts out.
Based on the video, the attacker was at the scene of the first mosque for about 10 minutes, and police did not arrive until after that.There was a second shooting at the Linwood Masjid Mosque a few miles away that killed at least 10 people. At least one of the weapons used by the gunman appears to have the names of previous mass-murderers, including Norwegian far-right extremist Anders Behring Breivik, who killed more than 70 people in 2011.
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