- Abdul Aziz, a 48-year-old Afghan refugee, chased the Christchurch gunman out of the Linwood Islamic Centre in New Zealand on Friday after the attacker opened fire.
- Aziz, who was with his family, chased the attacker outside with a credit card machine and grabbed one of the man’s guns before the attacker sped off.
- Minutes later, police officers rammed suspected gunman Brenton Tarrant’s car into a curb and took him into custody.
- Seven people were killed at the Linwood mosque, and 42 were killed at central Christchurch’s Al Noor Mosque earlier in the day. An additional victim died at the hospital.
A father-of-four who used a credit card machine to chase the Christchurch gunman away from his mosque where several people had already been killed on Friday says his sons begged him to come back inside as he confronted the attacker.
Abdul Aziz, a 48-year-old Afghan refugee, was hailed a hero for preventing more deaths when he faced off with the gunman at the Linwood Islamic Centre in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Aziz was praying with his family and about 80 other people on Friday at the Linwood Mosque when he heard gunshots, according to the New York Times.
Instead of going into hiding, Aziz decided to confront the gunman. He told Sky News that his children were saying “Please come inside.”
“I told them ‘you guys go inside, I will be alright,'” he said.
Abdul Aziz tells Sky News how he chased away the Christchurch attacker during the mosque shootings.
— SkyNews (@SkyNews) March 17, 2019
Aziz then ran to the front of the mosque, grabbed a credit card machine and hurled it toward the gunman.
The attacker dropped his gun and ran to his car to grab another weapon, and Aziz picked up the dropped weapon and tried to fire it, but it was out of bullets.
“I was screaming to the guy, ‘Come I’m here, come I’m here.’ I tried to put his focus on me. I didn’t want him to go inside the mosque,” Aziz told Sky News.
The gunman drove from scene after Aziz hurled the shotgun at his car, shattering the back window.
Minutes later, police officers rammed suspected gunman Brenton Tarrant’s car into a curb and took the 28-year-old Australian into custody on charges of murder.
The Linwood Mosque was the second of two mosques in Christchurch targeted by the attacker in the New Zealand city.
Fifty people were killed in the massacre, and dozens of others were inured.
Seven people were killed in the Linwood Mosque, and 42 were killed at central Christchurch’s Al Noor Mosque. An additional victim died at the hospital.
Latef Alabi, the Linwood mosque’s acting imam, called Aziz hero for the actions took.
“[Aziz] went after him … and that’s how we were saved. Otherwise, if he managed to come into the mosque, then we would all probably be gone,” Alabi told Sky News.
Aziz told Sky News that wouldn’t call himself a hero.
“I don’t think I’m a hero because if I was not there somebody else would do the same thing. That’s part of humanity, to help another human,” he said.
- Read more:
- The New Zealand shooting suspect fired his lawyer and will represent himself in court
- Here’s what we know about the victims of the mosque mass shootings in New Zealand that killed at least 50 people
- Over 1 million people have signed a petition to remove an Australian senator who blamed Muslim immigration for the New Zealand shooting
- Facebook, facing huge criticism over live streaming, says it removed 1.5 million videos of the New Zealand shooting in 24 hours
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