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New Zealand attack: how it unfolded

The unprecedented mass shooting was carefully planned and shocked the normally peaceful nation

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described the attack as one of the "darkest days" of their country. She said that the suspects held "extremist views" that have no place in New Zealand or anywhere else in the world.

An Australian citizen in his late 20s was charged with murder. Immediately after the shootings, two more people were arrested.

We already know the following.

Where the Christchurch shootings took place

An armed man aimed at two mosques in the center of Christchurch on Friday afternoon. Friday is the busiest day for many mosques around the world.

The first and most deadly shootout took place shortly after 1.30pm in the Al Noor Mosque.

A graphic video streamed live on social media for 17 minutes indicates that part of the attack is a man driving through the streets of Christchurch before reaching the mosque and finally opening the fire.

The terrible attack on the Al-Noor mosque, including the time the shooter returns to rearming, takes about six minutes.

When the gunman drove away from the Al Noor Mosque, he opened fire on several people walking along the street. The video seems to show.

Social media sites like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter struggled to stop the distribution of footage, and asked new questions about the company's ability to manage malicious content on its platforms.

Shortly after the livestream was over, a second attack took place in the Linwood Mosque. There, at least seven people were killed, another died later in the hospital.

In both places several weapons were found. Ardern said that improvised explosive devices were also found on the scene.

What do we know about the suspects?

Brenton Tarrant, 28, was charged with murder in connection with the unprecedented attack on the two mosques.
Mass suspects charged with murder in New Zealand

He appeared on Saturday in the district court of Christchurch. During his brief appearance, Tarrant was handcuffed and accompanied by three Taser-armed officers. He was silent during his court appearance and was taken back to court on April 5.

Shortly before the shootings, a link to an 87-page manifest on Twitter and 8chan, an online messaging forum used by anonymous accounts to voice extremist news and cheer on mass shooters, was posted to an account in Tarran's name

The manifesto is unsigned. His author claims to be a 28-year-old white man born in Australia. It is full of anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim feelings as well as explanations for an attack.

Brenton Tarrant appears in the district court of Christchurch. New Zealand demands that his face be pixelated.

Tarrant traveled around the world, "with sporadic stays in New Zealand," Ardern said in a press conference. She added that he was stationed in Dunedin, New Zealand, at the time of the attack.

She told reporters that none of the people arrested, including Tarrant, were on an observation list.

New Zealand's weapons control laws have been scrutinized

Prime Minister Ardern announced on local Saturday local time that the New Zealand arms laws would change in response to the terrorist attack.

She said that the chief offender owned a gun license and used five firearms during the attack – including two semi-automatic weapons and two shotguns.

"While working on the chain of events leading to both possession and possession of this weapon license, I can now tell you one thing, our gun laws are going to change," she said in a Wellington news conference.

Almost 30 years ago, the largest massacre in New Zealand's history occurred when a man killed 13 people in a shootout.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern spoke after the attack with the media.
The nation's weapons laws were eventually changed after the attack and regulated semi-automatic military-style firearms. However, New Zealand weapons legislation is still considered more relaxed than in most Western countries outside the United States.
While gun owners must have a license, they do not need to register their weapons – unlike in Australia.

Eliza Mackintosh and Gianluca Mezzofiore of CNN have contributed to this story.

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