Terror in Chch

Photo Essay: Grief and love

"An outpouring of love" is how Jacinda Ardern has described the response to the terrorist attack on two Christchurch mosques.

In Wellington a vigil at Basin Reserve on Sunday evening attracted a crowd estimated at 11,000, filling the banks and the ground. But from early on Saturday morning the focus was the Wellington Islamic Centre and mosque, prosaically next to the Z service station in Kilbirnie.

An armed police officer guards the mosque as people writes messages on the back of old billboards laid out on the footpath.


By Sunday the stairs into the mosque were completely covered.
Jacinda Ardern arrived unannounced on her return to Wellington from Christchurch.
Ardern waits to meet with community and religious leaders at the mosque in Kilbirnie.
A group of women and children stood with signs thanking New Zealand.


A tribune from a local boxing gym is tied around the fence of the mosque.
A heavily armed police officer guards the mosque entrance as children chalk messages of support.


Wellington's Sunday evening vigil, organised by the Wellington City Council along with Wellington Interfaith Council, the Wellington Multicultural Council and ChangeMakers Resettlement Forum, was originally planned to take place in Civic Square. But mid-morning, the venue was switched to Basin Reserve when it became clear that a larger turnout than expected was likely.

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