Political and Islamic leaders across the Middle East and Asia expressed their disgust at the deadly shooting at two mosques in New Zealand on Friday as some revealed their citizens had been caught up in the bloodshed.
The timing of the shootings in the city of Christchurch, during Friday prayers, and the posting on social media of what appeared to be live, point-of-view video footage of the assault by a gunman added to the distress of many.
King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman offer their condolences to New Zealand’s government.
King Salman sent a cable of condolences to the Governor-General of New Zealand Batsy Reddy for the victims of Friday’s terror attack on two mosques in Christchurch.
The Muslim World League expressed its deep sorrow and condemnation at the terrorist attack.
“Indonesia strongly condemns this shooting act, especially at a place of worship while a Friday prayer was ongoing,” Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi said in a statement.
She was earlier cited by media as saying six Indonesians had been inside the mosque when the attack occurred, with three managing to escape and three unaccounted for.
Indonesia’s ambassador to New Zealand, Tantowi Yahya, told Reuters inquiries were being made as to whether Indonesians were caught up in the attack. There are 331 Indonesians in Christchurch, including 134 students, the foreign ministry said.
In Muslim-majority Malaysia, Anwar Ibrahim, the leader of the biggest party in its ruling coalition, said one Malaysian had been wounded in the attack he described as a “black tragedy facing humanity and universal peace”.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan’s spokesman condemned what he called a “racist and fascist” attack.
“This attack shows the point which hostility to Islam and enmity to Muslims has reached,” Ibrahim Kalin wrote on Twitter.
“We have seen many times Islamophobic discourse against Islam and Muslims turning into a perverse and murderous ideology. The world must raise its voice against such discourse and must say stop to Islamophobic fascist terrorism,” he said.
Jordanian State Minister for Media Affairs Jumana Gneimat emphasized the country’s “rejection of terrorism and the assault of those living in peace and places of worship.”
Egypt condemned the terror attack in New Zealand and demanded that the names of victims be disclosed immediately.
Iranian state TV Friday said a spokesman of the foreign ministry, Bahram Ghasemi, condemned the shootings as a “terrorist attack.”
Iran’s ambassador to New Zealand, Jalaleddin Namini, told Iranian state TV that there were no Iranian nationals among those killed or wounded. However, Namini said he is still waiting for a confirmed list of the victims.