49 Muslim worshipers were shot dead during attacks on mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. The country has previously been immune to this type of incident. The idyll is shattered as gunmen opened fire on a congregation of Muslim worshipers attending prayer sessions in a mosque. This was on Friday, a day considered holy by Muslims. The Sri Lanka cricket team on a tour of New Zealand had also visited the mosque before the shooting. CNN has reported that the death toll in the Christchurch mosque attacks has increased to 49 and police say one man has already been charged with murder in the wake of the terrorist attack.

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Shooting

The shooting appears to have been carefully planned and a man claiming responsibility for the shooting apparently recorded a video of him firing a gun. New Zealand people are shocked and the test match between the Blackcaps and Sri Lanka cricket team has been canceled. The Guardian has reported a transcript of a conversation stating that it appears it was a very well planned act.

Well planned attack

The well-planned terror attack, like the attack in London last year, took the local police force by surprise.

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It is reported that the shooting took place in two mosques in central Christchurch. New Zealand police say they have arrested three men and one woman over the attacks. One man has already been charged with murder.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has described the attack as an "unprecedented act of violence." Anti Muslim and immigrant literature have been recovered from one of the vehicles used by the attackers. The attack is one of the biggest terror attacks and seems to be fueled by anti-Islamic sentiments.

Shock in New Zealand

New Zealand is one of the more peaceful countries and such wanton killings have never taken place on this scale. Gun laws are not too restrictive and it's still possible for a man to buy a handgun with proper identification and police clearance. However automatic weapons are much more controlled.

The shooting has shocked the world community and shows that for many, Islamophobia has become a prime motive. It appears the New Zealand and Australian police had no inkling that shooting and killing on this scale were being planned.

At least one Australian citizen was unknown on any watchlist by either the New Zealand and Australian police.

A witness told CNN that he saw a man with a "with his 3 or 4-year-old daughter" who had been shot in the back...He was screaming like get her to the hospital and the ambulance couldn't come in until it was secured so I just got my truck and loaded up him, and his daughter and this other guy had been shot in the leg, and took them to the hospital."

Of course, the possibility of retaliatory attacks could place even more New Zealanders in extreme danger.

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