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United Kingdom

New Zealand massacre victims: Afghan refugee viewed country as 'slice of paradise'

The first victim of the Christchurch terror attack has been identified as an Afghan refugee who believed New Zealand was a "slice of paradise". 

Daoud Nabi, a 71-year old man who ran the Afghani Association for his community, was among the first killed when the attacker opened fire in the Al Noor mosque on Friday.  

Brenton Harrison Tarrant, the main suspect, was charged with one count of murder on Saturday, a day after the attack that killed 49 people and wounded dozen.

Outside the court, the son of Mr Nabi demanded justice for his late father, who believed New Zealand to be a "slice of paradise."

"It's outrageous, the feeling is outrageous," Omar Nabi said. "It's beyond imagination.

"My father will be buried. I'd like to take him back to Afghanistan, this is his homeland."

He said he never would have expected anything like this could happen in Christchurch.

"Not at all, this is New Zealand man, multicultural you know. There's not many words that I can put to what has happened here because it's so calm and relaxed," he said.

His brother Yama said their father came to New Zealand from Afghanistan in 1977. He said he wasn't in the mosque at the time because he was running 10 minutes late.

"I was running and there was a guy [who] said there was a shooting in the mosque so I was running, while I was running there was a lady being shot," he said, according to ABC News.

"Her sister was shot on the footpath, on the driveway, and a little kid as well.

"My daughter rang my mum [and] said Dad didn't make it."

Mr Nabi said he went to court on Saturday "to have a look, a look at his face".

Victims came from across Muslim world

Jacinda Ardern, the New Zealand Prime Minister, said the victims came from across the Muslim world, with Turkey, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Malaysia among the countries rendering consular assistance.

Bangladesh's honorary consul in Auckland, Shafiqur Rahman Bhuiyan, said at least three Bangladeshis were among those killed and four or five others were wounded, including two left in critical condition.

Two Jordanians were among those killed, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by the state-run Petra news service. 

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