By Lalit K Jha
Washington, Mar 15 (PTI) President Donald Trump on Friday called the terror attacks on two mosque in New Zealand a "horrible massacre" and offered US assistance to its ally.
At least 49 worshippers were killed in attacks on the Al Noor Mosque in central Christchurch and the Linwood Mosque in the city's outer suburb, in what appeared to be the worst attack against Muslims in a western country.
Condemning the attacks, President Trump tweeted, “My warmest sympathy and best wishes goes out to the people of New Zealand after the horrible massacre in the Mosques."
“49 innocent people have so senselessly died, with so many more seriously injured. The US stands by New Zealand for anything we can do. God bless all!” Trump tweeted.
The White House also issued a statement condemning the attack.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. We stand in solidarity with the people of New Zealand and their government against this vicious act of hate,” White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders said in a statement.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo expressed his condolences to the grieving families of the victims.
“No one should have to fear such violence in their place of worship. The American people mourn this tragedy together with our friends in New Zealand,” Pompeo said.
“Horrified by the news from Christchurch. America stands with our brothers and sisters in New Zealand today,” Senator Chris Murphy said.
“We have so much work to do, in our country and across the world, to stamp out the hate that lurks in too many hearts,” he added.
Congressman Louie Gohmert described the shootings at the New Zealand mosques egregiously reprehensible.
“The shooters need to be prosecuted to the full extent of the law along with anyone who knowingly aided their efforts in any way,” he said.
“There are courts, dispute resolutions, and legislatures to resolve controversies – there is no place for cold blooded murders. Though New Zealand does not have the death penalty, hopefully its people, through their justice system, will send the message loudly and clearly that such barbarity from anyone will not be tolerated,” Gohmert said.
“I am heartbroken for my Muslim friends & cannot imagine their sadness as they awake to this terrible news. The attacks in New Zealand remind us again that hate & radicalism have no boundaries. Americans stand united with New Zealand during this difficult time,” Congressman Jim Banks said.
“Devastated by the tragedy in New Zealand. No one should ever have to feel unsafe in the sanctuary of their house of worship. No one should ever fall victim to extremist bigotry, or feel targeted for their religion. The United States stands with it's ally on this darkened day,” Congressman Gregory Meeks said.
“Horrified to learn of the Christchurch massacre - sending love to the victims, their families, and the entire New Zealand community today,” Senator Kyrsten Sinema said. PTI LKJ PMS