Showing posts with label New Zealand. Show all posts
Showing posts with label New Zealand. Show all posts

June 1, 2020

This Has to Be Reported by Media: New Zealand only Have 1 Active COVID-19 Case

New Zealand is now allowing gatherings of up to 100 people, and the
 country says it has just one active
 COVID-19 case. Much of the credit for the country's success has gone to 
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern,
 seen here walking through the coastal city of Napier on Friday.
Kerry Marshall/Getty Images
New Zealand is now down to only one active COVID-19 case, reaching a new level of success in its fight against the coronavirus. The last time a new case was reported in the country was more than a week ago; no one is currently hospitalized with the disease caused by the coronavirus.
"For the seventh day in a row, there are no new cases of COVID-19 to report in New Zealand," the Ministry of Health said on Friday.
The news came on the same day that the country further eased its restrictions on the public. It will now permit gatherings of up to 100 people — clearing the way for weddings, parties, funerals and other large events. Restaurants can also host up to 100 people, as long as safety protocols are followed.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has repeatedly urged caution, even as she has celebrated a string of successes in combating COVID-19.
When Ardern announced last month that the country had eliminated community transmission, she said, "We have won that battle," and added, "But we must remain vigilant if we are to keep it that way."
The prime minister is credited with taking decisive and early action to minimize the coronavirus's impact on her country.
"In mid-March, as cases were exploding in Italy and Spain, Ardern ordered anyone entering New Zealand into quarantine," NPR's Jason Beaubien reports. "At that point, the country had confirmed just six cases. A few days later, on March 19, Ardern shut down travel to the country, essentially banning all foreigners from entering the island nation of 4.8 million."
The prime minister also explained the "unprecedented" threat posed by the coronavirus and the country's plan to tackle it, laying out a four-stage lockdown system that closed schools, businesses and travel.
That system worked well, allowing New Zealand to permit businesses and schools to reopen earlier this month.
In a bid to help the country's economy by bolstering domestic tourism, Ardern has also urged businesses to consider allowing employees to work a four-day week
Overall, New Zealand has reported a total of 1,154 confirmed and 350 probable cases of COVID-19. Twenty-two people have died.
With seven more people having recovering from COVID-19 late this week, the number of recovered cases now stands at 1,481, the ministry says.
Worldwide, the four countries with the highest numbers of confirmed cases are the U.S. — with more than 1.7 million cases — followed by Brazil, Russia and the United Kingdom.

December 10, 2019

No One Left on New Zealand's Volcano on White Island

Reconnaissance flights over New Zealand's White Island volcano have not identified any survivors thereafter Monday's eruption, police say.
Up to 50 people were believed to be on the island. Five people are known to have died and 23 were rescued, some of them critically ill with burn injuries.
Police believe anyone who could have been found alive was evacuated. 
Rescuers have been unable to search the island because of the risk of new eruptions, and it is now dark. 
Tourists were seen walking inside the crater of White Island volcano moments before it erupted.
"Based on the information we have, we do not believe there are any survivors on the island," the latest police update says.
White Island, also called Whakaari, is the country's most active volcano. Despite that, the privately-owned island is a tourist destination with frequent day tours and scenic flights available.

BBC graphic
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Deputy Police Commissioner John Tims told reporters that "both New Zealand and overseas tourists" were believed to be involved.

Who was on White Island?

There are few details about those caught in the eruption. Some who had gone to the island were passengers from the Ovation of the Seas, a cruise ship owned by Royal Caribbean.  
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Australians had "been caught up in this terrible event", adding that authorities were "working to determine their wellbeing".
A web page set up by the New Zealand Red Cross for families to register missing loved ones includes people from Australia, New Zealand, the US, India, Britain, and other European countries.

What happened at the volcano?

The eruption of White Island began at about 14:11 local time (01:11 GMT) on Monday.
Visitor Michael Schade - who was on a boat leaving the island after a morning tour - filmed a thick plume of ash and smoke as the volcano erupted.

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He told the BBC he was at the crater just 30 minutes before the eruption. 
"It was still safe-ish but they were trying to limit the group sizes [of people visiting the volcano]."
Describing the eruption, he said: "We had just got on the boat... then someone pointed it out and we saw it. I was basically just shocked. The boat turned back and we grabbed some people that were waiting on the pier."
Another witness, Brazilian Allessandro Kauffmann, said in an Instagram post in Portuguese that the boat he was in had left five minutes before the eruption.
"This other tour that arrived right after, unfortunately, they did not manage to leave in time, and there were some people that suffered serious burns," he added.
A live feed from the volcano showed a group of visitors inside the crater before images went dark.

Stills from a live feed show the crater minutes before the eruption
Image captionA group of visitors could be seen inside the crater before images went dark
Presentational white space

Was there any forewarning?

On 3 December, geological hazard monitoring website GeoNet warned "the volcano may be entering a period where the eruptive activity is more likely than normal", although it added, "the current level of activity does not pose a direct hazard to visitors".
University of Auckland associate professor Jan Lindsay said the alert level was recently raised from one to two. "There was a heightened level of unrest and everyone was aware," she said.
"[The volcano] has a persistently active hydrothermal system... if gases build up under a block of clay or mud they can be released quite suddenly," Prof Lindsay said.

Map of White Island
Presentational white space

When asked if visitors should have been on the island, Prof Lindsay said: "It's a difficult question. It's often in a state of heightened unrest.
"GNS [New Zealand's geoscience institute] put out their alert bulletins and have good communication with tour companies, and they know what the risk is."

BBC graphic
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White Island has seen several eruptions over the years, most recently in 2016 but no-one was hurt in that event. 

March 17, 2019

A Massacre Happened When a Young White Man Felt There Are Too Many Immigrants}Too Little Whites!

The main suspect in mass shootings at two New Zealand mosques was charged with one count of murder on Saturday, a day after the attack that killed 49 people and wounded dozens.
Wearing handcuffs and a white prison shirt, Brenton Harrison Tarrant sat impassively as the judge read the charge against him.
Tarrant, an Australian-born former fitness instructor, and self-professed fascist, did not request bail and was taken into custody until his next court appearance scheduled for April 5.
He was likely to face further charges, police said.

Brenton Tarrant, gestures as he is lead into the dock for his appearance for murder in the Christchurch District Court on March 16, 2019
Brenton Tarrant, gestures as he is lead into the dock for his appearance for murder in the Christchurch District Court on March 16, 2019 CREDIT: GETTY 
A "right-wing extremist" armed with semi-automatic weapons, the 28-year-old suspect rampaged through two mosques in the quiet New Zealand city of Christchurch during afternoon prayers on Friday, killing 49 worshippers and wounding dozens more.
The attack, thought to be the deadliest against Muslims in the West in modern times, was immediately dubbed terrorism by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, as she led a shocked nation on one of its "darkest days."
The attacker live-streamed footage of himself going room-to-room, victim to victim, shooting the wounded from close range as they struggled to crawl away.

New Zealand shooting
Family members outside the Al Noor mosque in Christchurch
Mr. Tarrant allegedly published a racist "manifesto" on social media before the attack, featuring conspiracy theories about Europeans being displaced, and details of two years of preparation and radicalization leading up to the shootings.
"It is clear that this can now only be described as a terrorist attack," said New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
"From what we know, it does appear to have been well planned."
Two IEDs (improvised explosive devices) were found in a car and neutralized by the military, police said.
In Sydney, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison described the gunman as "an extremist, right-wing, violent terrorist".
NZ terrorist latest to use social media
His two targets were the Masjid al Noor mosque, where 41 people died, and a second, smaller mosque in the suburb of Linwood, where seven more died. The remaining victim succumbed in hospital.
The dead were said to include women and children. Around 48 people were treated for gunshot wounds at Christchurch Hospital, including young children, with injuries ranging from critical to minor.
The survivors included 17 members of Bangladesh's cricket team, whose game against New Zealand on Saturday has been postponed, and a Palestinian man who fled for his life after seeing someone being shot in the head.
Ms Ardern vowed on Saturday to toughen the country's gun laws after revealing the alleged shooter had legally bought the five weapons, including two semi-automatic rifles, used in the massacre.
The nation's firearms laws are lax compared to neighbouring Australia, which enacted a strict gun control regime in the wake of a similar massacre in 1996.
Ms Ardern said  Tarrant obtained a "Category A" gun licence in November 2017 which allowed him to purchase the weapons used to mow down worshippers in two Christchurch mosques.
Some of the guns appear to have been modified to make them more deadly, she said, adding that a ban on semi-automatic weapons would be considered.
"The mere fact... that this individual had acquired a gun licence and acquired weapons of that range, then obviously I think people will be seeking change, and I'm committing to that," she told a press conference.
"I can tell you one thing right now - our gun laws will change."  

Two police officers praised for arrest

A pair of rural New Zealand police officers dramatically arrested the suspected Christchurch gunman 36 minutes after authorities were alerted, it emerged on Saturday, as the prime minister hailed their bravery.
Jacinda Ardern said the alleged attacker, Brenton Tarrant, would surely have killed even more people were it not for the policemen.
"The offender was mobile, there were two other firearms in the vehicle that the offender was in, and it absolutely was his intention to continue with his attack," Ardern told reporters in Christchurch.
Grainy video apparently shot from a passing car shows the gunman's light-coloured vehicle at the side of a busy road, rammed against the kerb by a police car and with one of its front wheels suspended in the air.
Two police officers - one of whom appears to be armed only with a handgun - can be seen pointing their weapons at the open passenger-side door.
"They were rural community cops I understand from Lincoln (a nearby town) who were present here. Anyone who has seen the footage... they put New Zealand first," Ardern said.
"The individual charged was in custody 36 minutes from receiving the first call," she said.
The officers can be seen dragging a black-clad figure away from the vehicle, as motorists slowly drove by on the other side of the city carriageway.
Police Commissioner Mike Bush also praised the officers who brought the massacre to a halt.
"I would also like to commend - and some of you would have seen, the brave actions on social media of police staff who responded to this incident," he said.
"I'm extremely proud of what they've done today."

Sayyad Milne was 'a typical Kiwi boy who loved playing football

Brydie Milne, the half-sister of 14-year-old victim Sayyad Milne, has described him as "a typical Kiwi boy who loved playing football", Claire Drake reports.
"He was just so kind and quietly gorgeous," Ms Milne, a mum of four living in the North Island, told The Telegraph. Sayyad was the youngest in the family.
He was at Al Noor mosque, on Deans Ave, with his mother when the massacre happened. Sayyad's mum was in a different part of the building and managed to escape the gunman; friends of the family reported seeing Sayyad "lying on the floor of the mosque, bleeding from his lower body," said Milne.  
"It was a horrible situation. Imagine what his mum went through - leaving the mosque without him, not knowing if he was alive."
The family reported Sayyad missing and waited at home for updates. Milne said they didn't hold much hope for the teen's survival.
"Understandably they had to follow procedures. The bodies had to stay there over night. He wouldn’t have had any ID on him, like many people there," she said.
"His mum, his poor mum, and his brother and sister have just had a very long night and day waiting."
On Saturday afternoon Sayyad's parents were summoned to identify his body, said Ms Milne.
"I’m devastated for my family, that they won’t get their baby boy back," she said.
Milne said she would fly down to be with her Christchurch-based family on Sunday.
"It’s just unreal in little New Zealand. It’s so not real. It’s going to be very real when I get to Christchurch tomorrow."
In Dunedin, cordons have been lifted from Sommerville St, where police were investigating a potential connection with the Christchurch mosque shootings. 

Police remain outside a house on Sommerville St, Dunedin, associated with gunman Brenton Trent.
Police remain outside a house on Sommerville St, Dunedin, associated with gunman Brenton Trent. CREDIT: CLAIRE DRAKE
Evacuated residents were allowed home on Saturday afternoon. Armed police remained outside at least one house, however.

'A brave little soldier': Boy, 14, dies

John Milne says his 14-year-old son Sayyad was among thise who died at the Al Noor Mosque.
Sayyad Milne was a student at Cashmere High School in Year 10 and attended the mosque every week with his mother and friends.
"I've lost my little boy, he's just turned 14," Mr Milne told NZME.
 "I haven't heard officially yet that he's actually passed but I know he has because he was seen. [I'm] keeping it together and tears are helping. people are helping. Just by being here, it is helping."

Saudi citizen among the dead

A Saudi citizen has been confirmed as one of the victims of the attack.
The Saudi-owned satellite news channel Al-Arabiya reports one of two citizens of the kingdom wounded in the New Zealand mosque attack has died.
The channel, citing his family, said Mohsen al-Muzaini had succumbed to the wounds he suffered in the shooting on Friday.
The channel reported the second wounded Saudi, named as 19-year-old Aseel Ansari, was struck in the knee by a rifle round, but still was able to flee.

Australia 'bans Milo Yiannopoulos' from country

Australia has reportedly banned Milo Yiannopoulos from entering the country after the controversial right-wing commentator described Islam as a "barbaric" and "alien" religious culture in the wake of the Christchurch attack.
The decision was made on Saturday morning, The Age reported. 
In a Facebook post overnight, Mr Yiannopoulos, who was due to tour Australia later this year, said: "Attacks like this happen because the establishment panders to and mollycoddles extremist leftism and barbaric, alien religious cultures. Not when someone dares to point it out."
Earlier, Labor frontbencher Tony Burke said: "Surely the Liberal government is still not going to issue a visa to someone so he can conduct a tour to promote hatred against Muslims."

'We still love this country'

An imam who was leading prayers at a Christchurch mosque when a gunman brandishing semi-automatic weapons mowed down his congregation said the Muslim community's love for New Zealand would not be shaken by the massacre.
"We still love this country," said Ibrahim Abdul Halim, imam of Linwood Mosque, vowing that extremists would "never ever touch our confidence".

A message is displayed at a makeshift memorial outside Christchurch hospital in Christchurch, New Zealand
A message is displayed at a makeshift memorial outside Christchurch hospital in Christchurch, New Zealand CREDIT: AP
Halim gave a harrowing account of the moment during Friday prayers when gunshots rang out in the mosque, replacing peaceful reflection with screaming, bloodshed and death.
"Everyone laid down on the floor, and some women started crying, some people died immediately," he said.
But, he said, New Zealand Muslims still felt at home in the south Pacific nation.
"My children live here" he said, adding, "we are happy".
He said the majority of New Zealanders "are very keen to support all of us, to give us full solidarity", describing how strangers exchanged hugs with him on Saturday.
"They start to... give me big hug, and give me more solidarity. This is something very important."

Ardern reiterates promise to change gun laws

 Ardern reiterated her promise that gun laws would change in New Zealand, and said the firearms used in the mosque shootings appear to have been modified.
"New Zealanders will question how someone can come into being in possession of weapons of this nature.
"The guns used in this case appear to have been modified. That's a challenge police have been facing and a challenge we will look to address in changing laws."
She added: "There are a raft of issues on the table that I think we need to look at. We need to include modification of guns which can lead them to becoming essentially the kinds of weapons we've seen used in this terrorist attack."

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks to the media in Christchurch
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks to the media in Christchurch CREDIT: GETTY

Ardern: Suspect intended to continue rampage

Jacinda Ardern has spoken with the media during a visit to Christchurch.
The Prime Minister said the main suspect in New Zealand's worst peacetime mass shooting intended to continue the rampage before he was caught by police.
"The offender was mobile, there were two other firearms in the vehicle that the offender was in, and it absolutely was his intention to continue with his attack.
"I'm not privileged to a full breakdown at this point but it is clear that young children have been caught up in this horrific attack." 
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets with Muslim community representatives in Christchurch on Saturday

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets with Muslim community representatives in Christchurch on Saturday CREDIT: GETTY 

First victim identified

The first of the 49 victims to be identified was 71-year-old Afghan Daoud Nabi.
Outside the court where Tarrant was charged, his son demanded justice for his late father, who believed New Zealand to be a "slice of paradise."
"It's outrageous, the feeling is outrageous," he said. "It's beyond imagination."
The Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the victims came from across the Muslim world, with Turkey, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Malaysia among the countries rendering consular assistance.
One Saudi citizen and two Jordanians were among the dead, while five Pakistani citizens were missing.

Hospital chief gives update on the wounded

Christchurch Hospital chief Greg Robertson says seven of the 48 gunshot victims admitted after Friday's mosque shootings in have been discharged.
Roberson says a four-year-old girl who has been transferred to an Auckland hospital in critical condition and 11 patients who remain in Christchurch are also critically wounded.
 "We have had patients with injuries to most parts of the body that range from relatively superficial soft tissue injuries to more complex injuries involving the chest, the abdomen, the pelvis, the long bones and the head."
He says many patients will require multiple operations to deal with their complex series of injuries.

Suspect was apprehended 36 minutes after first emergency call

New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush said on Saturday that officers were searching the suspected attacker's residence in the city of Dunedin.
He added that it took just 36 minutes from the initial emergency call before the offender was in custody.
Four people were taken into custody following the attack on Friday, one of whom was released a short time later.
Mr Bush said two of them were arrested at a cordon, and that police were currently working to establish whether they had had any involvement in the incident.
He also praised his officers for their brave actions in the wake of the tragedy, adding: "Their intervention may likely have saved further lives."

New Zealanders reach out to Muslim neighbours with acts of kindness

On Saturday, people across New Zealand were reaching out to Muslims in their communities on social media to volunteer acts of kindness.
Many offered rides to the grocery store or volunteered to walk with them if they felt unsafe.
In other forums, people discussed Muslim food restrictions as they prepared to drop off meals for those affected.
The prime minister said the attack reflected "extremist views that have absolutely no place in New Zealand."
Immigrants "have chosen to make New Zealand their home, and it is their home," Ardern said. "They are us." 

Suspect's family helping police

Australian police say the family of the suspect in the New Zealand mosque shootings is helping their investigation.
New South Wales state Police Commissioner Mick Fuller says his officers are investigating to help New Zealand police and to ensure the safety of residents in the Australian state where suspect Brenton Tarrant is from.
Fuller says Tarrant's family is from the northern New South Wales town of Grafton and contacted police after seeing media reports of the shootings that killed at least 49.
Fuller says Tarrant has spent little time in Australia in the past four years.
Acting Deputy Police Commissioner Mick Willing says Tarrant was only known to police for "minor traffic matters."
Willing says there's no information to suggest any further threat in New Zealand or Australia.

Suspect pictured in court 

Brenton Tarrant, charged for murder, made a sign to the camera during his appearance in the Christchurch District Court in New Zealand.
The suspect was remanded without plea until his next appearance in the High Court on April 5.

Brenton Tarrant appears in the Christchurch District Court
Brenton Tarrant appears in the Christchurch District 

Sajid Javid  left 'sick to the stomach' by New Zealand attack

Home Secretary Sajid Javid said he has been left "sick to the stomach" by the terror attack in New Zealand.
Writing in the Express, Mr Javid called the attack "heart-breaking".
He added: "Sick to the stomach by the massacre of 49 innocent worshippers as they attended Friday prayers.
"They were simply targeted for being Muslims, as they paid respects to God.
"My own late father never missed Friday prayers. I often joined him, and I fondly look back on the peaceful moments we shared."

Christchurch suspect appears in court charged with murder

New Zealand police tweeted that the suspect has now appeared in court in Christchurch.
There was no detail given of any plea entered.
The force tweeted: "While the man is currently facing only one charge, further charges will be laid. Details of those charges will be communicated at the earliest possible opportunity."
Police added that 45 additional officers were deployed to Christchurch from other districts, with another 80 being drafted in today.
They tweeted: "A complex investigation is under way into this terrible attack, and Police have a number of a priorities today in terms of investigation and intelligence gathering.
"However another absolute focus for us is to ensure that the victims of this attack, including family members and loved ones of those killed and injured, have the best possible structures in place to provide support and welfare."

Media gathered outside the district court in Christchurch
Media gathered outside the district court in Christchurch 

Police begin search of scene

 New Zealand police are beginning a detailed search of the scenes of yesterday's attacks in the hope of uncovering more clues.

Police officers prepare to search the area near the Masjid Al Noor mosque, site of one of the mass shootings at two mosques in Christchurch
Police officers prepare to search the area near the Masjid Al Noor mosque, site of one of the mass shootings at two mosques in Christchurch CREDIT: MARK BAKER/AP

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