Police escort men from a mosque in central Christchurch, New Zealand, Friday, March 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Mark Baker)

B.C. police step up patrols at mosques after New Zealand shooting massacre

A total of 49 people were killed after attacks at two mosques in Christchurch

B.C. Mounties are working with mosques across the province to ensure safety following the mass shooting targeting Muslim worshippers in New Zealand.

Canada remains under a low threat level, but police in many cities across the country were stepping up patrols around places of worship on Friday and communicating with local Muslim communities about their security concerns.

READ MORE: Quebec City Muslim worshippers condemn fatal New Zealand mosque attacks

“Although some B.C. mosques may have an increased front line policing presence following this event, we are not aware of any specific threats and continue to exercise increased vigilance,” the BC RCMP said in a statement on Twitter.

Over the border, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio was one of the first in the U.S. to announce an increase of patrols by the New York Police Department.

“New Yorkers heading to prayer can be confident that their city will protect them,” he tweeted.

Politicians and representatives of Islamic associations have denounced the shooting, which appeared to be a carefully planned racist attack at two mosques, the deadliest one occurring at Al Noor mosque in central Christchurch where 41 people were killed.

A video that was apparently livestreamed by the shooter shows the attack in horrifying detail. The gunman spends more than two minutes inside the mosque spraying terrified worshippers with bullets again and again, sometimes re-firing at people he has already cut down.

READ MORE: Surrey RCMP increases patrols around mosques

During a second shooting at the Linwood mosque about five kilometres away, seven people were killed.

One more person died later at Christchurch Hospital.

Mass shootings in New Zealand are rare. Before Friday’s attack, the deadliest shooting in modern history occurred in the small town of Aramoana in 1990, when David Gray shot and killed 13 people following a dispute with a neighbour.

– With files from The Associated Press


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Sit-in on Saturday will protest move to curb loitering in Penticton’s downtown

Nanaimo Square Sit-In is taking place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Penticton council members plant tree to celebrate local government

It is the 100th anniversary of the Local Government Management Association of B.C.

Crews respond to smoke at Penticton thrift store

The rooftop A/C unit began filling the building with smoke, prompting them to evacuate

Housing provided for women and children fleeing violence in Penticton

Announcement on Friday is part of a provincewide initiative to construct additional housing.

Okanagan Dance Studio to host yard sale and market on June 1

Proceeds to support the studio’s showgroup

B.C.’s fight to regulate bitumen through pipelines to go to Canada’s top court

BC Appeal Court judges found B.C. cannot restrict bitumen flow along Trans Mountain pipeline

Nominate your favourite businesses for the Best of the South Okanagan

Join the Penticton Western News as they celebrate the Best of the South Okanagan awards

Friend of accused Kelowna murderer takes the stand

Elrich Dyck’s testimony continued Friday with details from the night Chris Ausman was killed

Princeton RCMP recover stolen homework and save the grade

It’s a slightly better excuse than “the dog ate my homework.” Earlier… Continue reading

New Summerland distillery has received recognition

Alchemist Distiller won audience choice award at recent competition

Scheer says it would take Conservatives five years to balance budget

Scheeraccused the Liberal government of spending $79.5 billion of previously unbudgeted funds

Vancouver woman sexually assaulted after man follows her home; suspect at large

Police are looking for an Asian man in his 40s after the incident on Vancouver’s east side.

B.C. man, 30, arrested for driving his parents’ cars while impaired twice in one day

The Vancouver-area man was arrested after officers caught him driving impaired twice in one day

Rally for climate justice strikes Okanagan yet again

A handful of students were seen rallying in front of the Okanagan Science Centre

Most Read