Terror attack in New Zealand

 

Sir, – Our thoughts and prayers are with the 49 people who have been killed, and dozens more who have been injured, after a gunman opened fire at mosques in New Zealand during Friday prayers.

The gunman, like all other terrorists, aimed to spread hatred and fear.

Innocent people have been killed in cold blood, but we will not let these terrorists and Islamophobes succeed.

We must all stand together against all forms of extremism with unity.

As Muslims, we are deeply concerned and anxious about growing levels of Islamophobia across the world.

The threat of the far-right extremists is real, and we must realise the threat that they pose to our societies. Hatred of any community creates a downward spiral of violence and terror, which affects all in a society.

The Irish Muslim Peace & Integration Council will continue to work with authorities to protect all of our communities against the growing threat posed by all extremists.

We pray for the grieving families and for peace and compassion in our increasingly polarised world.

I welcome the statements and messages of condemnation of these terrorist attacks and underlying messages of unity and solidarity with the Muslim communities from political, faith and civic leadership in Ireland.

We also urge the social media companies around the world to play their important role by clamping down on extremism and hate narratives which are spread through their platforms. – Yours, etc,

Dr UMAR AL-QADRI,

Chairman,

Irish Muslim Peace

& Integration Council,

Dublin 15.

Sir, – Our thoughts and prayers go out to all our Muslim brothers and sisters, and the residents of Christchurch who have been directly and indirectly affected.

Reverence for all human life is the essence of Islamic teaching. This is a time for prayers and efforts to stop such senseless violence in the world.

As a community committed to peace and rejection of all forms of extremism, we stand shoulder to shoulder with all those affected.

We pray for the speedy recovery of the injured and offer our deepest condolences to the families and friends of the victims. – Yours, etc,

Dr NAUMAN IFTIKHAR,

Ahmadiyya Muslim

Association,

Galway.

Sir, – Jacinda Ardern spoke for us all in the immediate aftermath of the mass shootings at two Christchurch mosques (“New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern describes attacks as one of the country’s ‘darkest days’”, Online, March 15th).

“You may have chosen us”, she said, “but we utterly reject and condemn you”. Ms Ardern’s powerful and measured words were a cause for hope on a grim day for New Zealand and the world. – Yours, etc,

JOE McCARTHY,

Dublin 7.