Across the country, New Zealanders gathered in support of the nation’s Muslims and to remember the victims of the attacks in Christchurch.
The attack on a New Zealand mosque took the lives of 50 worshippers Friday and left dozens more wounded when a white supremacist opened fire and live-streamed the shootings.
Local police have yet to publicly identify the victims, but a number of those killed or injured have been identified by their families in interviews with media outlets around the world.
A handwritten cardboard sign outside Mohammad Imran Khan’s restaurant, the Indian Grill in Christchurch, on Sunday said simply CLOSED. A handful of pink flowers laid nearby.
The owner of the convenience store next door, JB’s Discounter, Jaiman Patel, 31, said he helped the staff with the keys after the terrorist attack that claimed Khan’s life.
“He’s a really good guy. I tried to help him out with the setup and everything,” Patel said. “We also put the key out for them when the terrorists come, and sorted it out for him.”
Khan had a son who was 10 or 11, Patel said.
The two were business neighbors who helped each other out when needed, he said.
“We are helping each other. It’s so sad.”
SAYYAD MILNE, 14
Milne was described as a good-natured, kind teenager. The high school student was at the Al Noor mosque for Friday prayers when the attack started, his half-sister, Brydie Henry, told the Stuff media outlet.
Sayyad was last seen “lying on the floor of the bloody mosque, bleeding from his lower body,” she said her father told her.
Sayyad’s mother, Noraini, was also in the mosque and managed to escape, Henry said. The teenager has two other siblings, 15-year-old twins Shuayb and Cahaya.
“They’re all at home just waiting. They’re just waiting and they don’t know what to do,” Henry told the news site.
JUNAID MORTARA, 35
Javed Dadabhai is mourning for his gentle cousin, 35-year-old Junaid Mortara, believed to have died in the first mosque attack.
His cousin was the breadwinner of the family, supporting his mother, his wife and their three children, ages 1 to 5. Mortara had inherited his father’s convenience store, which was covered in flowers on Saturday.
Mortara was an avid cricket fan, and would always send a sparring text with relatives over cricket matches when Canterbury faced Auckland.
HAJI DAOUD NABI, 71
Nabi moved his family to New Zealand in 1979 to escape the Soviet-Afghan war. Days before the shootings, his son, Omar, recalled his father speaking about the importance of unity.
“My father said how important it is to spread love and unity among each other and protect every member of the society we live in,” Omar told Al-Jazeera.
Omar told the news network his father ran an Afghan Association and helped refugees settle in to a new country.
“He used to make them feel at home,” Omar said.
HUSNE ARA PARVIN, 42
Parvin died being struck by bullets while trying to shield her wheelchair-bound husband, Farid Uddin Ahmed, her nephew Mahfuz Chowdhury told The Daily Star , a Bangladesh newspaper.
Chowdhury said Uddin had been ill for years and Parvin took him to the mosque every other Friday. She had taken him to the mosque for men while she went to the one for women. Mahfuz said relatives in New Zealand told him when the shootings began, Parvin rushed to her husband’s mosque to protect him. He survived.
The Bangladeshi couple had moved to New Zealand sometime after 1994, Chowdhury said.
NAEEM RASHID, 50, and TALHA RASHID, 21
As the shootings unfolded, Naeem Rashid is seen on video trying to tackle the gunman, according to Rashid’s brother, Khurshid Alam.
“He was a brave person, and I’ve heard from a few people there, there were few witnesses . they’ve said he saved a few lives there by trying to stop that guy,” Alam told the BBC .
Rashid’s son, Talha Rashid, is also among the dead. Pakistan’s Ministry of Public Affairs confirmed their deaths in a tweet .
The elder Rashid was a teacher in Christchurch and was from Abbottabad, Pakistan. His son was 11 when his family moved to New Zealand. He had a new job and planned to get married.
An Iraqi who born in Abu Dhabi was killed in the attack on two mosques in New Zealand.
His mother wrote on social media that Hussein al-Umari was killed.
His family and friends had been seeking information on al-Umari, in his mid-30s, who had failed to return after going to Friday prayers at the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch.
His mother, an Iraqi calligraphy artist named Janna Ezzat, wrote on Facebook that her son had become a martyr.
Ezzat wrote: “Our son was full of life and always put the needs of others in front of his own.”
INDIAN CITIZENS KILLED
India’s ambassador to New Zealand issued the following names of Indian citizens who were killed in the mosque attacks:
Maheboob Khokhar, Ramiz Vora, Asif Vora, Ansi Alibava
Indian news reports said Alibava, 25, had moved to New Zealand last year after marrying Abdul Nazar.
The Indian Express newspaper said she was studying agriculture technology at Lincoln University and her husband worked at a supermarket in Christchurch. They got married in 2017.
The Manorama Online news site said her mother, Rasia, had prayed for the safety of the two when the news broke of the attacks.
Alibava used to call her family back in India every day, but they were worried when there was no call after the shootings. They later found out from the husband what had happened.
The report said she was hoping to find a job in New Zealand to support her family back home.
MORE PAKISTANI VICTIMS IDENTIFIED
Pakistan’s foreign ministry confirmed nine Pakistanis were killed in the Christchurch mosque attacks. They have been identified as follow:
Zeeshan Raza, his father Ghulam Hussain and mother Karam Bibi, Sohail Shahid, Syed Jahandad Ali, Syed Areeb Ahmed, Mahboob Haroon, Naeem Rashid and his son Talha Naeem.
Naeem Rashid and his son Talha Naeem, 22, died after trying to disarm the shooter.
Rashid’s brother Dr. Mohammad Khursheed, who lives in Pakistan’s garrison city of Abbottabad, received an emotional call from his sister-in-law telling him of his brother’s death. He died along with his son Talha Naeem .
Khursheed said his brother had already bought his plane ticket to Pakistan for a May family reunion. “He was very brave. He snatched the gun and I think he saved many lives,” Khursheed said.
Rashid had migrated to New Zealand in 2009. He was teacher here and same profession he had adopted there and so his wife.
Rashid’s 75-year-old mother Bedar Bibi was devastated and wanted to fly to New Zealand for a last look at her son and grandson. “I want the New Zealand government should take me there so I can have one last look of my beloved son and my grandson Talha,” she said.
The foreign ministry provided more information about other citizens who died in the attacks:
Sohail Shahid, son of Muhammad Shabbir, age 40
Syed Jahanand Ali, age 34
Mahboob Haroon, son of Shahid Mehboob, resident of Rawalpindi, age 40