9 Indian-origin people missing after New Zealand shootings that killed 49

NEW ZEALAND: Nine people from India or of Indian origin have been missing after Friday's shooting at two mosques in Christchurch in which 49 people have died, the Indian envoy in New Zealand said.

Two Indians have died in the attacks, a third is battling for his life, Asaduddin Owaisi, the leader of AIMIM (All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen Party) said.

During the Friday prayers, a gunman barged into the mosques and started shooting. The carnage continued when the passers-by were also targeted.

"As per updates received from multiple sources there are 9 missing persons of Indian nationality/ origin. Official confirmation still awaited. Huge crime against humanity. Our prayers with their families," High Commissioner Sanjiv Kohli tweeted.

The High Commission has also tweeted, offering help.

Owaisi has sought help from foreign minister Sushma Swaraj for the brother of one of the victims. The family is from Hyderabad.

Owaisi tweeted: "A video from #ChristChurch shows one Ahmed Jehangir who was shot. His brother Iqbal Jehangir is a resident of Hyderabad & would like to go to NZ for Ahmed's family."

In another tweet, Owaisi said: "His brother is serious and his family has little support. I'm only requesting the immediate support of your good offices in expediting his visa process. He'll make all arrangements to travel to NZ by himself."

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has condemned the shooting, described as the country's worst ever mass shooting, as a terrorist attack.

In the evening, the foreign ministry issued a statement that read, "The Prime Minister stressed India's strong condemnation of terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, and of all those who support such acts of violence. He stressed that hatred and violence have no place in diverse and democratic societies".

 

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PTI