Monday, January 17, 2022

New Zealand PM: Auckland supermarket violence ‘terrorist attack’

Armed police patrol near an Auckland city supermarket Saturday (4/9) after the terrorist attack on the shop the day before, Friday (3/9).

New Zealand authorities were so worried about the ISIS-inspired extremists that they tailed the attacker and shot him dead within 60 seconds of him striking with a knife, wounding six people on Friday.

Three shoppers were taken to an Auckland hospital in critical condition, police said. One is in serious condition, while the other two are in stable condition.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern described the violence as a terrorist attack. He said the man was a Sri Lankan national who was inspired by the Islamic State group and was well known by the state security agency. Ardern said she had been briefed on the man beforehand, but there was no legal reason to detain him.

The attack took place at around 2:40 p.m. at the “Countdown” supermarket in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city.

Police Commissioner Andrew Coster said a team of police and a specialist tactical unit followed the man from his home on the outskirts of Glen Eden to a supermarket in New Lynn. While they were very worried about the man, they had no reason to think he was planning Friday’s attack, Coster said. [ka/pp]

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