US President Donald Trump on Friday said he does not think the killing of 49 Muslims in New Zealand mosques shows that white nationalism is a growing problem in the world.
“I don’t really think so. I think it’s a small group of people that have very, very serious problems,” The Hill quoted Trump as saying when asked if he saw a rise in white nationalism.
“If you look at what happened in New Zealand, perhaps that’s the case. I don’t know enough about it yet,” he added.
The attacks on the two Christchurch mosques left at least 49 people dead. The gunman identified as an Australian white nationalist livestreamed the assault on social media platforms and published a manifesto online.
Brenton Harrison Tarrant, a 28-year old Australian citizen, allegedly called the US President “a symbol of renewed white identity.”
The alleged killer appeared to have posted a lengthy manifesto earlier in which he claimed that white people were being overwhelmed and displaced by foreign cultures.
In the document, filled with racist conspiracy theories, anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim views, he wrote that he supported Trump “as a symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose” but not as a “policymaker and leader.”
Responding to the same, Trump said that he was yet to see the manifesto and called the mass shootings “horrible”.
Earlier, Trump said he spoke to New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and offered assistance to the country in the wake of the terror attack.
“Just spoke with Jacinda Ardern, the Prime Minister of New Zealand, regarding the horrific events that have taken place over the past 24 hours. I informed the Prime Minister that we stand in solidarity with New Zealand – and that any assistance the USA can give, we stand by ready to help. We love you New Zealand!” he wrote on Twitter.
Who is the shooter
The 28-year-old suspect, identified as Brenton Harrison Tarrant appeared before a Christchurch court on Saturday on murder charges connected with Friday’s terror attacks which left at least 49 people dead.
He was remanded in custody without plea until April 5.
The accused is an Australian-born citizen and is a resident of Dunedin, situated around 360 km south of Christchurch.
According to the police, 41 people were killed at Al Noor mosque and seven at Linwood mosque while one injured died in a hospital.
Condemning the terror strike, Ardern had described it as a “terror attack” and said it “appears to have been well planned”. She asserted that New Zealand “will not and cannot be shaken” by this attack.
Several guns have been recovered from both mosques, while, two explosive devices were found on two vehicles at the scene, one of which was defused, the police confirmed.
(With agency inputs