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Breaking News, Mass Shooting In New Zealand, Forty People Dead In Christchurch, New Zealand Mosque Attack; New Zealand Under Siege. Aired 3-4a ET

Aired March 15, 2019 - 03:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[03:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JACINDA ARDERN, NEW ZEALAND PRIME MINISTER: It is clear that this can now only be described as a terrorist attack.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR: We continue following the breaking news in New Zealand. Welcome to viewers knew you in the U.S. and around the world.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Natalie Allen. Thank you for being with us. This has been going on for hours.

Now, the prime minister of that nation you just saw over there, Jacinda Ardern, says at least 40 people are dead in shootings at two mosques in the city of Christchurch. And authorities say that they stopped and disarmed at least two vehicles with improvised explosive devices, IEDs. The prime minister saying at least three people are in custody in connection with these attacks

HOWELL: One disturbing piece of information, one of the gunmen was wearing a body camera as he opened fire at a mosque, live streaming the whole thing on social media. Facebook and Twitter have taken the disgusting video down. Here is more of what the prime minister had to say just less than an hour ago. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ARDERN: It is with extreme sadness that I tell you that as of 7 p.m. tonight, we believe that 40 people have lost their lives in this act of active extreme violence. Ten have died at Linwood Avenue mosque, three of which were outside the mosque itself. Three have been killed at Deans Avenue mosque. There are also more than 20 seriously injured, who are currently in Christchurch.

It is clear that this can now only be described as a terrorist attack. From what we know, it does appear to have been well planned. Two explosive devices attached to suspect vehicles have now been found and they have been disarmed. There are currently four individuals who have been apprehended, but three are connected to this attack, who are currently in custody. One of which has publicly stated that they were Australian born.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ALLEN: With so many dead, the people that were able to get out are so very fortunate. And we've heard from some of the witnesses describing this terrible scene at one of the mosques when the gunman walked in opened fire. Here is what one man had to say shortly after that happened.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When I turned to open the door to the toilet and they started firing. And I said what was going on, they just keep firing, firing. This small window I try to go out off. I smashed the window. And the firing just kept going. When I just jumped into the fire, there was another door on the mosque. They see the people who are shooting from inside the mosque. And at the time, we jumped in and they just kept firing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: The stories of people who survived will be key to these investigators as they try to understand what happened, why this happened, and also this video -- this discussing video that has been taken down, quite frankly, on social media platforms. That will be key. Our Anna Coren has been following that part of the story. And, Anna, give us a sense of what you've learned.

ALLEN: Because you have watched the video, Anna. And we can tell that has had quite an effect on you.

ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Natalie, it would have an effect on anyone, who watched it. It was the most horrendous thing that I think I've ever seen. It was like watching a video game, a gunman just mowing down people.

And listening to the New Zealand prime minister speak a short time ago. She said this is not New Zealand. This is not who we are and that is -- that's the truth. New Zealand is this peaceful, loving, welcoming nation. It is -- it's a country of just 5 million people that has been rocked by the horrors that took place in Christchurch this afternoon.

But that video -- to watch that gunman and is now being concerned by the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison that he was -- he is an Australian citizen. He drove to the mosque and he livestreamed this video on Facebook. He drove to the mosque, he got out of his car, he was carrying the semi-automatic guns. He walked into the mosque. As soon as he passed the gates, he started firing towards the mosque.

[03:05:00] He then walk through the front doors and is mowing down anyone in his path. You can hear people screaming. You can hear people moaning, crying out for help. He then goes into a corridor. He reloads, walks back out, and starts shooting again.

He then calmly walked out of the mosque, gets outside the gates, and starts firing along the pavement in one direction, and then in the other direction. He then walks his car, gets more ammunition, walks back, shooting, walks back into the mosque, and continues his killing spree.

And as we discussed in previous hours, I'm sure if these people who were under fire, that they would have fallen to the ground. That would be your normal reaction in something as horrendous as that. Well, they didn't have a chance to get out alive because he then went up to each of those people at short range and executed every single one of them.

And to learn that death toll, those -- that 30 people died in that Deans Avenue mosque, that is what we saw. That is the number of bodies that we saw watching that video. He then leaves the mosque. He once again stands on the pavement and is firing.

And he sees a woman from a distance. He shoots her. She is -- she's crying out help me, help me. And he shoots her in the head. He then gets back in his car and he drives away, talking to himself, laughing. He fires at the wind screen. He fires up the passenger's window, just shooting randomly.

And then, what is so bizarre, you can hear the sirens blaring as the police are driving towards the mosque, he gets to this pedestrian crossing and stops and allows these people to walk passed. I mean, this is just one sick, deranged individual who has brought horror, complete horror to New Zealand.

ALLEN: Anna, it's just surreal, even hearing you describe -- it is chilling. And it is so fortunate that this man is in custody now. And we haven't really heard -- have we, how police were able to take him in or how that went down.

COREN: We have seen video of a police arrest. We don't know if it was that particular -- particular gunman. But he was obviously one of the three men who have been arrested. And listening to the New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush, and to the New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, this could've been so much worse, if that is at all possible.

I mean, 40 dead excruciating. That is just excruciating in anyone's terms. I mean, this is the sort of thing that happens in the United States, not in New Zealand. But as I say, this could've been so much worse. Because they found these cars, they arrested these individuals, and there were IEDs planted in these cars.

So we don't know if whether they were planning a suicide bombing. Were they going to drive into other mosques, other buildings? I mean, by the sounds of things, you know, the New Zealand Police Force have done an exceptional job. We know that the defense force is also now a part of this investigation.

Christchurch still in lockdown, people told don't go outside of your houses, don't go anywhere near mosques. But they do believe that they have the three people that were responsible for these attacks in custody. Obviously, everybody very vigilant, the national security threat level

has been taking from low to high. That is how seriously they are considering -- they are considering this.

And I think what is also very interesting is that these three individuals were not on any sort of watch list. So they had flown under the radar. These people were unknown to security, to police, intelligence. The Australian citizen here had been living in New Zealand for some time. But as Jacinda Ardern said, a short time ago, this was, without doubt, a terrorist attack.

HOWELL: Anna Coren, giving us an understanding of what's on that video. Anna, it seems that this person was meticulous, was methodical, it was premeditated, and just sick. What happened there, thank you for updating us.

ALLEN: Yeah. And we have more evidence of just how sick this was, because we have reported 40 dead. But we are just hearing from Christchurch Hospital that some 48 people are there who were shot and are being treated right now.

They're ranging from young children to adults with gunshot wounds and other kinds of injuries from critical to minor. So you're looking at this heinous, heinous act. And Anna was saying that she watched the video. You can tell. There are going to be so many more people who are dead and injured.

[03:10:01] So, now we know, 40 dead, 48 in one hospital being treated.

HOWELL: Here's the other thing. So, there's so many people who are injured. There's many people have been killed, 40 people. And the process to identify the dead and to notify next of kin will take hours, if not days.

Another thing that played out, just to share with our viewers in the U.S., this played out about 1:40 in the afternoon...

ALLEN: There.

HOWELL: Local time. Children were in school. And the schools went on lockdown.

If you can imagine this as a parent, I certainly am thinking about this, and I know you think about this. Not being able to get to your child when something like this is happening. The children were to stay in the school until the situation was resolved. That had to be so terrifying for those families.

ALLEN: And imagine this, also at the same time, there 1,000 children taking place in a climate change rally. These are things going on around the world.

HOWELL: Right.

ALLEN: About the time that this happened. We don't know of anyone getting hurt from that. But that's yet another element of this horrifying story.

HOWELL: The schools are no longer on lockdown. The children have been returned to their homes. That is good news.

ALLEN: So let's talk now with Steve Moore, one of our experts we've been talking with throughout our coverage for the past few hours. He is live for us in Los Angeles, a CNN law enforcement analyst and a retired supervisory FBI special agent.

I just want to start with what we just learned there, Steve, 48 people in people in the hospital being treated, and 40 people killed. This gunman went to task in this horror. What does that say to you about the number? He was able to carry this out. And of course, three people under arrest here.

STEVE MOORE, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, it's almost distasteful to even think about. But what we found is that there are certain types of killers who come in and they shoot randomly. They shoot at anything that moves. And then, they leave.

This is one of those few that actually go back and make sure people are dead. This is unusual. It's not unheard of. But when this happens, the death -- the death toll is obviously as much higher.

I'm really startled by the fact that this guy not only did this attack, which he said was motivated by the strong feelings he has and he puts out this manifesto. But then he's driving down the street shooting randomly. What does that say about why he is really killing?

HOWELL: Let our viewers know that we are awaiting a news conference from the police there in Christchurch, New Zealand. And we're awaiting that at any time. And we have to interrupt you as that happens live.

But, Steve, you know, so three people who are now in custody -- these three people who absolutely be questioned about a motive here.

MOORE: Yes. And the motive, you know, they've already put that out there. They put 87 pages of manifesto out there, apparently. And, you know, we can argue back and forth whether -- whether they are just violent people looking for a reason to hurt others, or whether they believed in any of this stuff.

But you're going to look at them. But you can't take what they say necessarily as truth, because they're obviously in this for their own reasons. So what they're going to do, what the police need to do and will do, is go through their social -- social media, through their emails, through their entire electronic footprint, because the one thing they're not going to say is whether they had friends that were helping them.

They will say everything about this stupid ideology that they have that says it's OK to kill people, and, you know, that kind of sickness. But they're not going to say things about, oh, and my cousin helped me. They're not going to do that.

So, what you have to do and the only way you can prove this, is to get into their electronic bread crumbs, essentially, and find out where they've been. And this will tell you a lot about who helped them, how they got their weapons, and what type of planning. Nobody does something like this without documenting it.

If nothing else, I've seen people just have to-do lists, you know, buy explosives for the cars. That stuff is going to be found. And this is going to be like uncovering a tomb in Egypt. You're just going to have to do it in an archeological way and mark everything that you find, and where it was, and what you find.

ALLEN: We will continue to talk with you, Steve. But I want to let our viewers know that we expect an update from police at any moment. And when that begins, we will immediately take you to that live because we last heard from them just almost three hours ago. So, we'll see what else they have for us.

But in talking about the complexities of carrying this out, surely pulling a trigger, that's just an act of cowardice, doesn't take any brains or anything there. However, to get weapons like this, and the amount of ammunition -- help us understand the amount here in a country where guns are illegal. How much work did that take?

[03:15:20] MOORE: It -- it might have taken a lot of work. But it doesn't have to. The problem is in the same way that we all know that in Asia you can buy knock-off purses, knock-off fashion, guess what? You can buy, from China, knock-off Uzis, knock-off AR-15s, knock-off AK-47s.

I can, you know, tell you the name of the companies that do that. But I won't. You can order them and get them from overseas. The problem is that you can close down your area, but you can't close down the entire world. Just the way we can't get some countries to sign on to climate treaties or things like that. We can't get them to clamp down on sending weapons around the world.

HOWELL: Steve Moore, we appreciate you being with us. And we will stay in touch with you as we learn more from police to get your expertise on it.

You're walking breaking news coverage on CNN, the terror attack that took place and Christchurch, New Zealand, 40 people killed, 30 people at one mosque on Deans Avenue, 10 people killed on a mosque on Linwood Avenue, 20 others seriously injured and are in a hospital.

Stand by. We will have more after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[03:20:55] HOWELL: Welcome back. As we continue following the breaking news out of Christchurch, New Zealand, two mass shootings at two different mosques, with many fatalities.

Just moments ago, we heard from the prime minister of that nation calling this a terrorist attack and confirming at least 40 people were killed, 30 people were killed at the Deans Avenue mosque, the Al Noor Mosque there on Deans Avenue, and 10 people killed at the Linwood Avenue mosque. Christchurch Hospital is treating 48 patients with gunshot wounds, from young children to adults.

ALLEN: That gives you a sense of the magnitude of this massacre. The prime minister said three people have been arrested, but police cautioned that there still could be others at large.

Also, a part of what they found, cars rigged with IEDs, explosives, also in a chilling part of this grotesque acts like. One of the alleged gun men was wearing a body cam and livestreamed the massacre, the bloodshed. Social media sites have been taking it down. One attacker is believed to have also posted a long anti-immigrant manifesto giving explanations for the attack.

HOWELL: A bus containing Bangladesh' cricket team pulled up to one of the mosques while the shooting was happening. And you see the video here, showing them walking away from that scene unhurt. Let's bring in Chris Lynch. Chris has been with us now for several hours from Newstalk ZB Radio in Christchurch.

And, Chris, It's late, there about 8 p.m. -- 8:22 p.m.

CHRIS LYNCH, NEWSTALK ZB RADIO: Yeah.

HOWELL: So, tell us, what's the situation there as far as investigators, police there on the streets?

LYNCH: Well, I've been driving around the streets of Christchurch when I came -- before I left. What's really, really odd in the city is the fact that when you look at the national newspaper online, and you see the word city under siege. And that is just something that I think most people of Christchurch are starting to comprehend. It doesn't feel real. The streets of Christchurch are part of the central city, incredibly eerie and incredibly quiet.

I can hear the helicopters flying above the city. And we are talking about a really peaceful, relaxed city of New Zealand. It's just something that -- I'm in shock. I think most people are shock. You don't expect this.

Of course, the latest developments really are, as you may have heard from the prime minister -- I'm sorry, the New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern. And the focus will of course now be faced on, why would authorities did not have these people? They weren't on any security watch list.

And that's -- and that's a concern. This is something that we hear all the time. They manage to get away with it. Perhaps even more concerning and despicable is that in this manifesto, one of the perpetrators talks about the reason why they targeted Christchurch City. It's because we often think about it, and so, isolated from terrorism and from acts of violence.

As I was explaining two hours ago, New Zealand is not known for gun violence at all. No matter how small it is, it makes national news. It makes the national news. So, for this to happen in the city, we are in shock. And we are simply devastated. The only question from the media is, had they get away with it? How do they do this? It is such a quiet city.

ALLEN: All right. And then, in a country where guns are illegal, except for hunting, and you have to get a license for that. And they carry out this massive attack with guns, and so much ammunition to kill so many people, to injure so many people.

And I know that people in New Zealand say that a watch has happened, unfortunately all the time in the United States, somewhat other places.

[03:25:10] HOWELL: Yeah.

ALLEN: But not there. And you have to think, how does this change the psyche of people in New Zealand?

LYNCH: That's right. And with respect to your American viewers, one of the things we say is only in America. Whenever there's a shooting, the first thing we say, there goes another one in America. This is not something that we are used to. This is not something we identify ourselves with.

The last mass shooting happened in the very small sleepy town in the south part of New Zealand in the mid-80s. There has been nothing since because we're not known as a country of gun lovers.

Usually, we love our hunting, our deer hunting, and fishing. But as a matter of routine, people just don't have guns in their homes for recreational use. So the other question will be how did these -- how did these perpetrators get hold of such devastating, monstrous guns?

ALLEN: Yes, guns which we have seen and still pictures that were posted there for a while. And it is chilling to see, just the weaponry that this maniac used to carry such out an unspeakable act against these innocent people, who were just worshiping on a Friday afternoon.

HOWELL: And, you know, we're just looking to post images, one after another, after another, after another. So many people who were injured or killed, it is more than tragic.

Stay with us. We'll be right back after the break.

[03:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR: We continue following the breaking news this hour. Two mass shootings in the City of Christchurch, New Zealand. I'm George Howell.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Natalie Allen, welcome to our viewers in the United States and all around the world. We continue to bring you the very latest as we get it.

The Prime Minister of that nation, Jacinda Ardern, says at least 40 people are dead in shooting at two mosques in the city of Christchurch. The city has about 400,000 residents, a hospital is treating 48 people, including children with gunshot wounds. HOWELL: Authorities also say they stopped and then disarmed at least

two vehicles armed with IED's, improvised explosive devices. The Prime Minister says at least three people are now in custody in connection with this attack and she made it clear, this is not who New Zealanders are and she considers whoever did this, terrorists.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JACINDA ARDERN, PRIME MINISTER OF NEW ZEALAND: People can see images like from Christchurch. It will be obvious to them that this is a significant event and I can tell you now this is and will be one of New Zealand's darkest days.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: Hearing there from the Prime Minister and now bringing in our Anna Coren. Anna has watch the terrible video that basically was live streams as this happened. She can explain that to us in a moment, but Anna, what more has the Prime Minister had to say?

ANNA COREN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's certainly an impassioned plea from the Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, basically saying this is not New Zealand. New Zealand is a loving, welcoming nation of 5 million people who opens its doors, opens its borders to migrants and that has been New Zealand's immigration policy today.

They have allowed people from Muslim countries to come and settle from War zones, to come and move to the sanctuary that really is New Zealand's. So, for this to happen in Christchurch, New Zealand third largest city this afternoon. It's just rocks the nation and we heard that from the Prime Minister, she obviously was in Nairobi, Kenya, attending a U.N. conference earlier today.

She was flown straight back to New Zealand to Willington, where she gave a press conference a short time ago saying that we reject and condemn these violent extremism. This ideology, it does not belong to New Zealand. Take a listen to what she had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ARDERN: Our thoughts and our prayers are with those who have been impacted today. Christchurch was the home of these victims. To many, this may not have been the place they were born, in fact for many New Zealand's was the choice, the place they actively came to and committed themselves to, the place they were raising their families, where they were part of communities that they loved and who loved them. It was a place that many came to for its safety. A place where they were free to practice the culture and the religion.

For those of you who are watching at home tonight and questioning how this could've happened here, we, New Zealand, we were not a target, because we are a safe harbor for those who hate. We were not chosen for this act of violence, because we condone racism, because we're in enclave for extremism. We were chosen for the very fact that we are non-of these things.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[03:35:06] COREN: Now, the three people who have been taken into custody. One of them is an Australian citizen. He was the one who live streams, this killing spree. The Deans Avenue Mosque and it was absolutely chilling to watch that 17 minutes of video he recorded on his helmet camera and in the killing spree inside that most place for some six minutes, but I think what is really interesting as well, George, Natalie, is that police said that they -- when they apprehended at least two of the people involved in these attacks that they found IED's attached to their cars. So, if they were able to carry out perhaps the attack that they were initially planning. The death toll could have been even worse.

ALLEN: Absolutely and as you said you did take it down this heinous video on Twitter and Facebook. Facebook issued a comment about that, you watched it, Anna and said that it was one of the most disturbing things you've ever seen in your life, can you elaborate somewhat?

COREN: Yes, I've been reporting for some decades now and I've never seen anything as horrendous as what I watched this morning. It was, as we said 17 minutes of video captured on the helmet camera of these man, he had live stream it on Facebook, as you said that is now being taken down. The Prime Minister asking it not to be shared, not to be spread around, because that is against everything that that New Zealand stands for. But it is absolutely chilling.

You see him drive to the Mosque, music playing in his car, he gets out, he gets his semiautomatic weapons and there are three of them in the front seat. He's holding one. He walks to the back opens the booth, there were another two semiautomatic guns. There's ammunition, there's Jerry cans filled with what we presume is to be fuel, even walks calmly to the Mosque, walks inside the gates starts firing straightaway.

He then walks through the front doors and just starts mowing down every single person in his path. You hear these people who were there for Friday prayers. They are screaming, they are moaning, crying out for help. He pulls himself into a car door, reloads, walks back outside continues he's killing spree.

He then walks slowly outside of the mosque. He gets to the pavement. He turns in one direction starts firing in the other direction, firing, shooting people randomly, shooting people, he then goes to his car, reloads, gets more ammunition comes back inside into the mosque and any of those people who perhaps were like playing dead on the ground. Any of those people who thought, I'll just lie here hoping that he goes away. They were all executed at point-blank range. He went up to each of them and shot them, killed them.

He walked outside the mosque, he then stands outside on the pavement shooting in both directions. He sees a woman, he shoots her. She falls, she's saying help me, help me and he goes up and shoots her in the head. It was absolutely horrific. He then gets to his car, he drives off shoots out the windscreen shoots out the passenger window and then you hear the police sirens roaring as they are they driving to the mosque. As I say, it was just absolutely horrific. ALLEN: Yes. No words at all and of course this happened in the city

where Muslims have embraced the city, people have embraced them, refugees have come from Syria and people describe, you know, this mosque is a very peaceful place, very welcoming, very neighborly and to think that this was carried out as they went there to pray. Anna Coren, we appreciate your reporting. We appreciate your insights, we know this is painful for everyone involved, thank you.

HOWELL: Anna, thank you. We'll be right back after this.

[03:40:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HOWELL: We continue following the breaking news out of New Zealand, the city of Christchurch. There were two mass shootings of two different mosque killed many, many people just a short time ago. The Prime Minister confirmed at least 40 people were killed -- 30 at the Deans Avenue Mosque and 10 at the Lynnwood Avenue Mosque. Christchurch hospitals is treating 48 patients with gunshot wounds from young children to adults. Now keep in mind it's about 8:45 p.m., 8:44 there right now. This happened around 1:40 -- 2:00 p.m. Local Time.

ALLEN: And still no word on the good victims who they were they had not been ID by police. But we do expect to hear from police in the next hour to bring us an update. The Prime Minister has said three people have been arrested, but police caution. There could still be others out there who were involved with this. They just don't know that the danger might not be over, because they also found when they made the arrest, cars that were rigged with explosives and one of the alleged gunman, was wearing a body canvas, this is what makes a sick, sick story even more sick.

[03:45:00] He was wearing a body cam and even live streamed what he did, the bloodshed. Social media sites have now been taking that down. One attacker is believed to have also posted along anti- immigrant manifesto, giving explanations for the attack and were seeing reverberations around the world. Were just now learning that police in New York City are closely monitoring events in New Zealand and out of an abundance of caution, assessing security applications around New York City. One can understand that with what has just happened.

The head of St. John Ambulance there in New Zealand says more than 20 ambulances responded to the shooting and dozens people now being treated in hospitals.

HOWELL: Here's Peter Bradley in what he told us earlier, listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PETER BRADLEY, CEO, ST JOHN AMBULANCE, NEW ZEALAND: We were called to -- call of multiple shooting -- that's 1:53 New Zealand time and we had ambulance in the scene in less than a minute and I's a terrible situation scenario for the emergency service responders to come across when they arrive. And over the proceeding hours we've transported dozens of patients to hospitals and clearly a number of fatalities and injuries ranging from gunshot wounds to the head and the face and arms, legs and torso and soft tissue injuries.

(Inaudible) people are trying to escape and make the escape. We had them over 20 ambulances responded over 50 to 60 ambulance staff involved in the scene. And, yes, all patients taken to the Christchurch emergency department where they are now being treated in ICU and we are about to review if any of those patients require transport to other hospitals, to relieve some pressure on a very hard working ED in Christchurch.

ALLEN: Do you have any sense, Peter of the number of people that were injured here. We just heard a chilling report from our reporter out of Hong Kong who saw the video that unfortunately circulated on social media about there being so many people shot in that mosque. What are you hearing?

BRADLEY: The exact number actually as you might appreciate -- the serious patients were transported directly by ambulance, and for that, somewhere around the 50 mark. But of course, we have patience who self-presented to the emergency departments and patients that went to look on medical centers, so, scores of patients in one way or another would've been treated and transported to for treatment. So, a large numbers and some very, very serious --

ALLEN: The latest is 48 people in the hospital being treated for injuries. We'll take a quick break. More of our breaking news after this.

[03:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ALLEN: And again our breaking news is from New Zealand and story that you would not typically think to come from such a peaceful country as New Zealand, at least 40 people there dead, according to the nations prime minister in two mass shootings at two different mosque in the city of Christchurch.

HOWELL: Just a short time ago, we spoke with witness who was inside one of the mosques when all the shooting started. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MOHAN IBN IBRAHIM, WITNESS TO MOSQUE SHOOTING: I was actually praying inside the mosque, like I was inside the mosque and it was a big mosque and what happened around 1:40 to 45, there was like gun firing sound was coming from the backside, because I was quite inside. So what happened is like, there is a barricade in the middle, so, if somebody gets inside by using the main door they have to come walk inside like (inaudible) and they have to walk like maybe one minute, so what happened is like, there was that door -- two doors on the left side and the right side. So, when I heard the sound coming and I thought it was possible -- maybe electric shock, circuit, something like that and then it was like continuously happening.

And on the right side people were just coming out of the mosque by using that door on the right side door and we were just running towards the back side and there was a barricade wall there -- a wall we had to jump out of the wall and still we were like hearing the sound of the gun. It was continuously shooting for maybe 10 to 15 minutes and later we use the backside and then came out on the other street and since then the police -- we called to the police and (inaudible) and when I came to this I saw that one person got shot on his chest and ambulance came, and the police came there, the doctor was taking care of him.

So that time I went to live on Facebook to show actually what was happening. And one more sad thing is like, it's not only happens to this mosque, there are two mosque in Christchurch area into two suburb. One in (inaudible) Deans Avenue, I call to my other friend who are, you know, who went to other mosque and we asked them is the same thing happened here as well. And they told me like five people died out there in that mosque.

And I have seen on my (inaudible) which is three people died on the -- they were like on the street and I couldn't contact two of my friends who are inside the mosque as well. That's what I saw --

HOWELL: Mohan Ibrahim --

IBN IBRAHIM: -- there was a lot of police and ambulance came and they allowed us to go in the mosque and I'm in to get close it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HOWELL: And that was an interview that I had with Mohan ibn Ibrahim just after all of this happened, he escaped, but again 30 people killed at one mosque, 10 people killed in another.

ALLEN: five hours ago when we started this without maybe nine people have been killed. This goes to show you the magnitude of what happened in New Zealand. We appreciate you watching our breaking news coverage here at CNN. I'm Natalie Allen.

HOWELL: And I'm George Howell. The news continues here on CNN after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

END