Mosque Help

■ Gov­ern­ment of New Zealand will as­sist Fi­jian fam­ily, who are vic­tims of the at­tack, to at­tend the sen­tenc­ing of the ter­ror­ist


The grand­son, of one of the vic­tims of the 2019 Christchur­ch mosque shoot­ings, is keen to wit­ness the sen­tenc­ing of the man re­spon­si­ble for his grand­fa­ther’s death. Mo­hammed Iftikar Ali was yes­ter­day grate­ful of the

news that the New Zealand Gov­ern­ment ex­tended fi­nan­cial sup­port to fam­ily mem­bers liv­ing abroad who wished to wit­ness the sen­tenc­ing in per­son.

The ter­ror­ist, Bren­ton Tar­rant, will be sen­tenced on Au­gust 24 af­ter plead­ing guilty to 51 charges of mur­der, 40 charges of at­tempted mur­der and a charge of com­mit­ting a ter­ror­ist act.

The late Ashraf Ali Razat was one of three Fi­jians to die from the March 15, 2019 ter­ror at­tacks in con­sec­u­tives shoot­ing at two mosques in Christchur­ch.

Mr Razat was the owner of Nabua’s

Meads Taxis, which is now run by his grand­son, Mr Ali.

Mr Ali said he would dis­cuss the mat­ter with fam­ily of the prospect of go­ing to New Zealand.

“We were not aware that the New Zealand Gov­ern­ment was pay­ing for the flights and if we would’ve known it ear­lier, we would have al­ready started the ar­range­ments of fly­ing out,” he said.

“We are grate­ful for this op­por­tu­nity and we will give it a go.

He said he was happy that the NZ Gov­ern­ment con­sid­ered the Fi­jian griev­ing fam­i­lies im­por­tant as well.

“My grand­fa­ther will get peace.

He was serv­ing Al­lah when he got shot,” he said.

“We are not an­gry, but feel pity on him (the shooter), for what he did was wrong, and he did not think be­fore tak­ing this sin­ful ac­tion.

“My grand­fa­ther taught me about his busi­ness and guided me in the right path when he was here with me in Fiji. It is very hard to ac­cept that he is gone,” Mr Ali said.

Mean­while, the fam­ily of the other two vic­tims are un­der­stood to have mi­grated to New Zealand.

The New Zealand High Com­mis­sion is ex­pected to re­spond to­day.

Ac­cord­ing to Do­min­ion Post’s Stuff, sev­eral vic­tims over­seas were anx­iously wait­ing for de­tails.

Flights will ar­rive from Turkey, Malaysia, Aus­tralia, Qatar, the United King­dom, Bangladesh, In­dia, Su­dan, Afghanista­n, Egypt, Spain, Mau­ri­tius, Jor­dan, Pak­istan, Ethiopia, Fiji, and Bahrain once visas are ar­ranged.

All will be re­quired to com­plete two weeks of man­aged iso­la­tion, as other in­ter­na­tional ar­rivals do, while New Zealand’s COVID-19 re­stric­tions re­main.

Photo: Shreeya Verma

Mo­hammed Iftikar Ali.

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