We stand with our Kiwi friends: People around the world offer their support after New Zealand mass shooting


Different religious organizations, lawmakers, CEOs, and others offered their support following the mass shooting in Christchurch, New Zealand on Friday afternoon.

Police have yet to provide the number of casualties, but the incident could potentially be the deadliest shooting in the country.

Here’s what world influencers had to say:

New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference

Foto: sourceREUTERS/Max Rossi

“Dear Members of the Muslim community in Aotearoa New Zealand, We hold you in prayer as we hear the terrible news of violence against Muslims at mosques in Christchurch,” the New Zealand Catholic Bishops Conference said.

“We wish you to be aware of our solidarity with you in the face of such violence. Peace, Salaam.”

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New Zealand rugby team All Blacks

Foto: sourceShuji Kajiyama/AP

“Christchurch, we stand with you during this time,” the rugby team said. “Our thoughts and sympathies are with everyone affected by today’s tragedy. Stay strong. Kia Kaha.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Foto: sourceAP

“Devastated by the reports out of New Zealand,” Cook said on Twitter. “The community in Christchurch is in our hearts, as are all affected by this horrific attack.”

Cook ended the tweet with a quote from civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.: “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York

Foto: sourceREUTERS/Brian Snyder

Ocasio-Cortez listed the names of cities where previous mass shootings occurred in the US.

“At [first] I thought of saying, ‘Imagine being told your house of faith isn’t safe anymore,’ Ocasio-Cortez said on Twitter. “But I couldn’t say ‘imagine.’ Because of Charleston. Pittsburgh. Sutherland Springs.”

“What good are your thoughts & prayers when they don’t even keep the pews safe,” Ocasio-Cortez said.

Ocasio-Cortez qualified her remark, adding that her phrase was in reference to the NRA’s “phrase used to deflect conversation away from policy change during tragedies.”

“Friends, Morning (Friday) is Jummah, the weekly day of worship for our community of Muslim friends and loved ones,” the lawmaker added. “Be there for them. Check in. Perhaps extend a kind gesture at your local mosque. There is so much fear and hate. We must negate it with active, courageous love.”

US ambassador to New Zealand Scott Brown

Foto: sourceCarolyn Kaster/AP

“We’re heartbroken over the events in Christchurch today,” Brown said in a brief statement, adding the Māori phrase for “stay strong.” “We stand with our Kiwi friends and neighbors and our prayers are with you. Kia kaha.”

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern

Foto: sourceTV New Zealand / TV New Zealand / AFP

“What has happened in Christchurch is an extraordinary act of unprecedented violence,” the prime minister said. “It has no place in New Zealand.”

“Many of those affected will be members of our migrant communities – New Zealand is their home – they are us,” she continued. “The person who has committed this violent act has no place here.”

Premier of Victoria Dan Andrews

Foto: sourceTheo Karanikos/AP

“Victorians stand with Christchurch tonight, after this darkest of days,” Andrews said. “And we must all stand against the forces in our society that try and stir up animosity and anger. That try to divide us.”

Andrews said buildings in Melbourne will be lit in New Zealand’s colors in solidarity and that its flags would be flown at half-mast.

“Like Melbourne, Christchurch has been strengthened over generations by its proud multicultural communities,” he added. “It came together to rebuild after an unprecedented earthquake. And it will come together again.”

“To our NZ family who will be feeling shaken and shocked – arohanui.”

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