4 Egyptians among dead in New Zealand attack

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Mar 16 2019 10:59 PM

A man prays at a flower tribute area at Botanical Gardens in Christchurch, New Zealand, March 16, 2019. Edgar Su, Reuters

CAIRO - Egypt said Saturday that four of its citizens were among the worshipers killed in a mass shooting attack at two New Zealand mosques.

"New Zealand authorities confirmed (to us) the deaths of four Egyptians," the migration ministry announced on its Facebook page.

It named them as Munir Suleiman, Ahmad Gamaluddin Abdel Ghani, Ashraf al-Morsi and Ashraf al-Masri.

A heavily armed Australian right-wing extremist attacked two mosques in New Zealand's Christchurch on Friday, killing 49 people.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has said the victims came from across the Muslim world. One Saudi citizen and two Jordanians were also among the dead, while five Pakistani citizens were missing.

The grand imam of Egypt's famed Al-Azhar mosque and university, Sheikh Ahmed al-Tayeb, has condemned the attacks as a "horrific terrorist attack".

The "rising rhetoric of hatred and xenophobia and the spread of Islamophobia" were to blame, he said.