New Zealand PM urges global action on dangers of social media

Arturo Kim
March 21, 2019

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern returned to Christchurch for the second time since a gunman killed 50 people in an attack on two mosques last Friday.

A high-ranking member of Isis called for revenge after Friday's attacks at Christchurch mosques that killed 50 people and injured 50 more.

Candles are placed March 18, 2019 to commemorate victims of the March 15, shooting, outside the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand.

A 44-year-old businessman was remanded in custody after a preliminary court appearance in Christchurch Wednesday on charges of distributing footage of one of the mosque shootings.

She ended her speech with the Arabic greeting "Al salam Alaikum", meaning "Peace be upon you".

"One thing I can assure you - you won't hear me speak his name", she said. He is a criminal.

"I woke up like so many of you, devastated and heartbroken yesterday morning about the news from New Zealand", said Rep. Melissa Hortman.

Ms Ardern assured MPs that the attacker would "face the full force of the law". Crisis magazine, tweeted. Ardern's critics have nearly completely quietened, and Muslim communities in New Zealand have said that they feel supported in their home all due to Ardern's strength as a leader.

"We can not simply sit back and accept that these platforms just exist and that what is said on them is not the responsibility of the place where they are published".

"They are the publisher, not just the postman". Not just the postman. "It can not be a case of all profit, no responsibility".

She said the gunman "obviously had a range of reasons" for his acts and that "lifting his profile was one of them".

The social media giant said it had removed 1.5 million versions of the video in the first 24 hours, but Ardern expressed frustration that the gruesome footage was still circulating.

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What's the reasoning behind the PM's no-naming drive?

During a visit Wednesday to the high school Hamza and another victim attended, Ardern revisited that thought and asked students not to say the attacker's name or dwell on him.

The AR-15 was used at Port Arthur and has been used in a number of high-profile United States mass shootings.

Its website argues for "no name, no photo and no notoriety", challenging the media to "deprive violent like-minded individuals the media celebrity and media spotlight they so crave".

New Zealanders wanting to own a gun must jump through several hoops to obtain a gun license, including a background check and interview, a home inspection and a gun course, according to The New York Times, though nearly every person who applies for a gun license gets one.

"By covering terrorist attacks by Muslims dramatically more than other incidents, media frame this type of event as more prevalent", it added.

"I strongly believe that the vast majority of legitimate gun owners in New Zealand will understand that these moves are in the national interest, and will take these changes in their stride".

He appeared in court last Saturday and entered no plea.

Meanwhile, Tarrant dismissed his court-appointed lawyer, Richard Peters, and made a decision to represent himself during his trial. Islamic tradition calls for bodies to be cleansed and buried as soon as possible.

"I know the process has been hard and frustratingly slow from the perspective of family members".

The bullet-riddled Al Noor mosque in Christchurch was being repaired, painted and cleaned ahead of Friday prayers, as grieving families buried more victims. Body washing will go on through the day and night to have the dead ready for burial, said one person involved in the process.

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