Saturday, May 25, 2019
Home World It is filmed, please save us: Bangladesh Stars desperate request

It is filmed, please save us: Bangladesh Stars desperate request

A Bangladeshi journalist traveling with his country's cricket side has given a frightening insight into his experience after being shot dead in a Christchurch mosque yesterday afternoon.

Filming took place just minutes from Hagley Oval, where the canceled test was to be held and the Bangladesh cricket team narrowly avoided the incident and the scene had to flee.

The team had just arrived for a Friday prayer in the Al Noor Mosque when an armed man opened the fire. The video showed several Bangladeshi players and media escaping the scene.

Mohammad Isam, a journalist from Bangladesh for Cricinfo, who was present and gave a descriptive account of the afternoon's shocking events for Espncricinfo.

Read the full account here.
1.52 clock: I get a call from Tamim Iqbal, one of the oldest cricketers in the team, as I leave the Hagley Oval. He calls for help. "Here is shot, please save us." I think he's playing a prank first, but he hangs up and calls again – this time his voice starts cracking. He says I should call the police because gunfire is taking place in the mosque they are entering.

3:33 pm: My first instinct is to run to the mosque. I do not even stop thinking; You can call me an idiot because I ran into an active scene of terrorism, but I knew I just had to leave. Partly as a journalist, mainly as a human.

I run towards the main street when a lady, who also drives out with her car, asks if I should go. I tell her what Tamim told me, and she tells me to go inside. My colleagues from Bangladesh, Mazhar Uddin and Utpal Shuvro, are also coming.

3.66 pm: We see the entrance to Deans Avenue, where the mosque is located, blocked by a police car. So we get out in front of the Parkview Hotel on the corner of Deans and Riccarton Avenue. I run to the mosque as I see the team bus from Bangladesh. There are a couple of police cars and a couple of ambulances. Some people are standing around wondering what happened at the intersection.

But if I look to the right towards the motel entrance, it becomes clear: There is a corpse on the ground being looked after by paramedics. There is blood everywhere.

2 pm: I see a man coming towards me, crying and holding his arm. On his shirt is definitely blood. The people nearby help another man to escape and call him instructions. I quickly run to the bus when I see a number of Bangladeshi players running away from the bus. I cross the street and as I get closer, Ebadot Hossain grabs my arm and tells me to run with them. At this point I still have no idea what actually happened; I do not even know if the team was the target.

14.02 clock: The players are now on the side of Hagley Park and someone asks for directions. The ground is to your right, about 15 minutes on foot. The players enter the park and start running when someone tells them to go fast. No running.

14:04: I go with Tamim and then I see how the players spread too far. I ask Sohel to bring them all together. It's impossible, but some of them are slowing down to go together.

It's no more than a kilometer away, but it's the longest minutes of my life. Players talk about what they saw – the blood, the bodies. An older player holds me and breaks down. I can not tell him much.

8:08 pm: We reach the Hagley Oval and just run into it. All are taken to the dressing room of the players, where they can finally sit. They are visibly shaken.

17.00 clock: The tour is canceled by New Zealand Cricket in consultation with the Bangladesh Cricket Board and the ICC.

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