New Zealand Mosque Attack Eyewitness: "I Played Dead So Gunman Wouldn't Shoot Me"

15 March 2019, 07:23 | Updated: 15 March 2019, 08:10

A witness to the mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand in which 49 people were killed told LBC that he pretended to be dead to avoid being shot by the attacker.

Shoaib Gani was at Friday prayers at the Linwood Islamic Centre at the time of the shooting.

Speaking to Nick Ferrari, he explained how a masked gunman with "welcome to hell" written on his rifle, opened fire on Muslims who were praying.

Armed police watch as a man is taken to hospital after the Mosque shooting in New Zealand
Armed police watch as a man is taken to hospital after the Mosque shooting in New Zealand. Picture: PA

With emotion in his voice, he said: "I was in the middle of the prayers when I heard multiple gunshots outside the mosque. One of the brothers tried to look outside to see what happened and shouted that someone was shooting.

"Suddenly, there were gunshots coming through the window, shooting one of the guys standing right next to me.

"Then everybody fell on the ground and tried to protect themselves.

"I saw multiple gunshots and people lying dead. I saw one of the men's brain out on the floor.

"I tried to crawl to the corner and I could still hear gunshots being fired to the back of the door. I saw women and children crying, getting shot.

Survivors from the Mosque shooting with blood on their clothes
Survivors from the Mosque shooting with blood on their clothes. Picture: PA

"I called the police and ambulance and they said that help was coming. But I could still hear gunshots. People were still getting shot. I could see it happening.

"I could see blood everywhere and bodies lying dead.

"People were calling for me to come into the corner to be safe, but I couldn't move because I thought that if I moved, he'd shoot me too. So I was acting dead."

Another witness, Len Peneha, said he saw a man dressed in black enter the Al Noor mosque - with people running away in terror. He also claimed that he saw the gunman flee before emergency services arrived.

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