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Foreigners among those killed and wounded in New Zealand mosque attacks

Terror expert on New Zealand attack, manifesto

Several of those who were killed or wounded in the shooting rampage at two New Zealand mosques on Friday were from the Middle East or South Asia, according to initial reports from several governments.  

The live-streamed attack by an immigrant-hating white nationalist killed at least 49 people as they gathered for weekly prayers in Christchurch. Another 48 people suffered gunshot wounds in the attacks.     

"So far," three Bangladeshis are among those killed and four or five others are among the wounded, including two left in critical condition, Bangladesh's honorary consul in Auckland, Shafiqur Rahman Bhuiyan, told The Associated Press. "One leg of an injured needed to be amputated while another suffered bullet injuries in his chest," Rahman Bhuiyan said. 

Two Jordanians were among those killed, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by the state-run Petra news service.  Mohammed Elyan, a Jordanian in his 60s who co-founded one of the mosques in 1993, was among those wounded, as was his son, Atta, who is in his 30s. That's according to Muath Elyan, Mohammed's brother, who said he spoke to Mohammed's wife after the shooting.

Muath said his brother helped establish the mosque a year after arriving in New Zealand, where he teaches engineering at a university and runs a consultancy. He said his brother last visited Jordan two years ago.

"He used to tell us life was good in New Zealand and its people are good and welcoming. He enjoyed freedom there and never complained about anything," Muath told The Associated Press. "I'm sure this bloody crime doesn't represent the New Zealanders." 

Anti-immigration, white supremacy messages in manifesto linked to New Zealand mosque shooting

Pakistan's Foreign Ministry said four Pakistanis were wounded, and Ministry spokesman Mohammad Faisal tweeted that five other Pakistani citizens are missing after Friday's attacks. Malaysia said two of its citizens were hospitalized, and the Saudi Embassy in Wellington said two Saudis were wounded.

India's high commissioner to New Zealand, Sanjiv Kohli, tweeted Saturday that nine Indians were missing and called the attack a "huge crime against humanity." Indian officials have not said whether the nine were believed to be living in Christchurch.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said at least three Turkish citizens were wounded in the attacks in New Zealand and that he has spoken to one of them.

Afghanistan's ambassador to Australia and New Zealand said two Afghans are missing and a third person of Afghan origin was treated and released from the hospital.

Two Indonesians, a father and son, were also among those shot and wounded, Foreign Ministry spokesman Arrmanatha Nasir said. Nasir said the father is being treated at an intensive care unit and his son is in another ward at the same hospital. He declined to identify them.

The man's wife, Alta Marie, posted on Facebook that her husband and their son are both alive, but wounded. Marie said that both were shot in the attack Friday at Christchurch's Linwood Islamic center.

"My husband was shot in multiple places and has a drain in his lung," she wrote on Facebook. She said she was with her son, who is "traumatized" after being shot in his back and leg.

Muslims shout slogans as they condemn the Christchurch mosque attack in New Zealand, after Friday prayers at the Baitul Mukarram National Mosque in Dhaka
Muslims protest the Christchurch mosque attack in New Zealand in Dhaka, Bangladesh, March 15, 2019. MOHAMMAD PONIR HOSSAIN/REUTERS

Law enforcement sources have told CBS News that Australian-born Brenton Harrison Tarrant, 28, was charged with murder over the attacks on the two mosques. Officials have not yet confirmed the identity of the man charged, or that Tarrant is the man who appears in a video that was livestreamed on Facebook depicting the attack from the vantage point of the gunman. 

Officials have also not confirmed that the man charged is the same person who wrote a 74-page racist manifesto posted online, which appears to lay out a motive in the form of a hatred of non-white immigrants.

The suspect used rifles covered in white-supremacist graffiti and listened to a song glorifying a Bosnian Serb war criminal.