The New Zealand prime minister addressed the nation after a horrific mass murder attack was reported in a mosque.
Reports indicate that a lone killer entered the mosque and began shooting at the attendants at about 1:40 pm local time on Friday. There is a video that the killer livestreamed during the attack.
One witness told CNN what he saw when the attack commenced.
"I was in the mosque," said Mohan Ibn Ibrahim. "It's a big mosque and there were more than 200 people inside. The gunmen came from the backside. Gunshots went on for a long time. We had to jump the wall to escape. I saw lots of broken glass and bricks on the backside of the mosque."
The Canterbury police tweeted about the situation from their official social media account.
We have a critical incident in Deans Ave Christchurch. Please avoid the area. We will give more in the near future.— Canterbury Police NZ (@Canterbury Police NZ) 1552611356.0
"We have a critical incident in Deans Ave Christchurch," the police tweeted. "Please avoid the area. We will give more in the near future."
There were early reports that another mosque had been attacked at around the same time.
The Christchurch City Council indicated that many government buildings were going into lockdown mode.
"In response to a serious ongoing incident we're locking down number of central city buildings, including the Civic Offices and Central Library," the council tweeted.
An unconfirmed report from the New Zealand Herald indicated that there was a 37-page manifesto that outlined the motivation for the mass murder.
Multiple fatalities have been confirmed by local authorities, but the exact number has not been reported. Other reports say that a suspect has been captured.
"They are us," said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern of the mosque victims. "The person who has perpetuated this violence against us is not. They have no place in New Zealand."
Here's a breaking news video about the attack:
Mass shooting at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealandwww.youtube.com