Police in New Zealand are responding to an active shooter situation in central Christchurch.
According to Stuff.co.nz, the shooting occurred near at least one mosque in the area.
A man with a gun entered the mosque at around 1:40 p.m. local time, the former president of the Muslim Association of Canterbury Mohammed Jama told Stuff.
New Zealand police urged people in the area to stay indoors. It was not immediately clear whether there were any injuries or deaths.
Police are currently responding to reports of shots fired in central Christchurch at around 1:40pm.Armed police have been deployed.Police urge anyone in central Christchurch to stay indoors and report any suspicious behaviour immediately to 111.
— New Zealand Police (@nzpolice) March 15, 2019
Police confirmed to Insider that the shooter is still active, but would not comment on the number of injuries.
According to Radio New Zealand, there were up to 300 people inside the mosque for afternoon prayers.
A witness told Radio New Zealand that a man in a helmet and glasses and a military style jacket entered the mosque and began shooting with an automatic weapon. He added that a woman and child may be among the injured.
Police Commissioner Mike Bush said in a statement that the situation was “serious” and has urged residents across Christchurch to remain off the streets as the shooter remains at large.
“Police are responding with its full capability to manage the situation, but the risk environment remains extremely high.”
“Police recommend that residents across Christchurch remain off the streets and indoors until further notice. Christchurch schools will be locked down until further notice.”
This is a developing story. Check back soon for updates.