NZ begins inquiry into Christchurch’s massacre

WELLINGTON: An inquiry into Christchurch’s mosques shooting massacre began hearing evidence yesterday, as New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern prepared to co-host a meeting in France that seeks global support to tackle online violence.

A lone gunman killed 51 people at two mosques in Christchurch on March 15 while livestreaming the massacre on Facebook. It was New Zealand’s worst peace time shooting.

New Zealand’s Royal Commission inquiry will look into the suspected gunman’s activities, use of social media and international connections, as well as whether there was inappropriate priority settings in counter terrorism resources.

“The commission’s findings will help to ensure such an attack never happens here again,” Ardern said in a statement announcing a second commissioner to the inquiry.

The Royal Commission’s website said it would gather information until August. It will report its findings to the government on December 10.

Some in the Muslim community called for better communication about the inquiry.

The Royal Commission did not immediately respond to request for comment.

Ardern is in Paris this week to co-chair a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron tomorrow that seeks to have world leaders and chiefs of tech companies sign the “Christchurch Call”, a pledge to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online. – Reuters