Right-wing senator blames Muslims for terror attack at New Zealand mosque

Toronto police representative Caroline de Kloet told Global News they will have a "heightened" police presence at places of worship, focusing especially on mosques.

"I also pay tribute to the emergency services and volunteers who are providing support to those who have been injured".

The attacks happened at two Christchurch mosques. An unspeakable crime not only against human life, but also the freedom of religion.

Malcolm Bell, convener of Shetland Islands Council, said: "Shetland has deep connections with New Zealand".

President Donald Trump also offered his condolences.

"At this stage we will not be discussing the offenders' possible motivations or the causes of this incident", New Zealand Police tweeted.

In an absolutely disgusting press release, Queensland's Senator Fraser Anning allowed one sentence to condemn today's atrocity, before dedicating the rest of the text to demonising Muslims with such words as "Let us be clear, while Muslims may have been the victims today, usually they are the perpetrators" and "Islam...is the religious equivalent of fascism".

"So I tried too get out and I pushed myself at the back where my auto was, and from there I heard the shooting, it went on six minutes or more, I could hear screaming and crying, I saw some people drop dead, some people were running away, I was in a wheelchair, so I couldn't get anywhere".

New Zealand police said 49 people had died and more than 40 were wounded.

New Zealand's ambassador-designate to the U.S., Rosemary Banks, told NPR that authorities are "convinced this particular event is over".

Ardern said the attack by people with "extremist views" was "unprecedented - unlike any that we have experienced before". "New Zealand, like Australia, is home to people from all faiths, cultures and backgrounds".

They also expressed fear of follow-up attacks, and urged for greater protection at mosques worldwide.

The Muslim Community Center, which operates a mosque on the North Side and schools in Morton Grove and Skokie, said in a statement that it planned to hire extra security patrols and advised its members, "Please be vigilant by keeping your eyes and ears open and being aware of your surroundings".

Elsewhere on social media, Muslims from all over the USA and the globe began sharing pictures from their mosques and Jummah prayers with the hashtag #MyMosque. "It is crucial that at this time we all remain united against hatred, division and bigotry". "Everyone should have the right to worship without fear, and an attack on a place of worship is terrorism perpetrated against all of us".

"This is indeed a very sad day for all", said I.H. Kauser, National President of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community Australia, in a statement.

At 5:30pm (local time), police confirmed they had arrested four people, including three men and one woman.

Our thoughts and our prayers are with those who have been impacted today.

Meanwhile, Bob McKenzie, of the New America thinktank and director of its Muslim Diaspora Initiative, said it should be pointed out in light of the attacks in New Zealand that his group has recorded a significant increase in anti-Muslim activities in America since late 2015, tracked in its specialist database.

He added that British Muslims would feel anxiety today and called for mosques to be protected.