Erdogan says New Zealand mass shooting shows growing hostility to Islam

The attacks on the Christchurch mosques left at least 49 dead, with one gunman -- identified as an Australian extremist -- apparently livestreaming the assault and publishing a manifesto online.

Published: 15th March 2019 08:44 PM  |   Last Updated: 15th March 2019 08:44 PM   |  A+A-

NZ mosque shooting New Zealand mosque shooting

The manifesto detailing motivations for the attack was posted on Friday morning onto a Twitter account with the same name and profile image as the Facebook page that streamed the attack. IN PIC: This image taken from the alleged shooter’s video, which was filmed Friday, March 15, 2019, shows a gun in his vehicle. (Photo | AP)

By PTI

ISTANBUL: Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday condemned the deadly attack on two mosques in New Zealand, saying it illustrated the growing hostility towards Islam "idly" watched by the world.

The attacks on the Christchurch mosques left at least 49 dead, with one gunman -- identified as an Australian extremist -- apparently livestreaming the assault and publishing a manifesto online.

"With this attack, hostility towards Islam, that the world has been idly watching and even encouraging for some time, has gone beyond individual harassment to reach the level of mass killing," Erdogan said at the funeral of a former Turkish minister.

Turkish media reported the manifesto contained specific references to Turkey and ridding the famed Hagia Sophia in Istanbul of its minarets.

Now a museum, the building was once a church before being turned into a mosque during the Ottoman empire.

"It is clear that the understanding represented by the killer that also targets our country, our people and myself, has started to take over Western societies like a cancer," Erdogan said.

The Turkish leader, who often criticises Islamophobic attitudes, called for the West to act to prevent similar attacks.

ALSO READ | Nine Indian-origin persons missing in New Zealand mosque massacre: Envoy

"If measures are not taken right away, news of other disasters will follow this one. I am calling on the world, in particular the West, to take quick measures," he said.

After Friday prayers, dozens of people gathered outside Istanbul's Fatih Mosque -- one of the city's main mosques -- chanting condemnation of the attack and waving signs saying "Stop global terrorism" and "Crusader Savagery in New Zealand".

Erdogan had earlier condemned the attack on Twitter: "May Allah have mercy on the victims and grant a speedy recovery to the wounded.

" Speaking in Brussels, Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu also condemned the killing, blaming "irresponsible politicians who incite hatred against Muslims and propagate xenophobia".

"There are lessons that everybody needs to learn from this attack, especially in the EU, in the members of the EU," he said after meeting with EU officials.

"Hate language used against the Muslims should not be considered as a part of freedom of expression."

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp