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Man Accused in Christchurch Mosque Shootings Charged with Terrorism

The single charge filed Tuesday against Australian Brenton Tarrant is the first of its kind

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Brenton Tarrant, charged for murder in relation to the mosque attacks, is lead into the dock for his appearance in the Christchurch District Court, New Zealand, March 16, 2019. (Suspect's face blurred at source) VOA

Authorities in New Zealand have charged the self-avowed white supremacist who killed 51 worshippers at two Christchurch mosques back in March with terrorism.

The single charge filed Tuesday against Australian Brenton Tarrant is the first of its kind under New Zealand’s Terrorism Suppression Act, which was passed in 2002 in the wake of the al-Qaida-led terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, D.C. the previous year. Prosecutors have also charged him with an additional count of murder over a worshipper who died in the hospital earlier this month, along with two additional counts of attempted murder, bringing that number to 40.

Up to 200 family members of the victims and survivors of the attack were informed of the new charges at a private meeting with police.

The 28-year-old Tarrant live-streamed the March 15 shootings at the al-Noor and Linwood mosques on Facebook from a head-mounted camera.

Man, Christchurch, Mosque, Terrorism
Authorities in New Zealand have charged the self-avowed white supremacist who killed 51 worshippers at two Christchurch mosques. Flickr

He is currently being held at a maximum security prison where he was ordered to undergo psychiatric tests to determine if he is mentally fit to stand trial. His next court date is June 14.

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The 28-year-old Tarrant e-mailed a lengthy white nationalist manifesto to more than 30 recipients just minutes before the attacks – including Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern – in which he allegedly denounced Muslims and called immigrants “invaders.” (VOA)

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Sikh Man Wears Rainbow Turban for Pride Month

Pride Month kicked off on June 1 and honours the LGBTQ community while commemorating New York's Stonewall riots in June 1969

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Pride Month kicked off on June 1 and honours the LGBTQ community while commemorating New York's Stonewall riots in June 1969. Pixabay

Jiwandeep Kohli, a San Diego-based neuroscientist who is bisexual and a Sikh, is ringing in this years Pride Month with a rainbow turban that has gone viral on social media.

Sharing an image of the elaborate creation on Twitter that has received nearly 30,000 likes, Kohli, who was also a former contestant on “The Great American Baking Show”, celebrated what makes him unique, reports The Huffington Post.

“I’m proud to be a bisexual bearded baking brain scientist,” he captioned the image. “I feel fortunate to be able to express all these aspects of my identity and will continue to work towards ensuring the same freedom for others.”

Pride Month kicked off on June 1 and honours the LGBTQ community while commemorating New York’s Stonewall riots in June 1969 that signalled a turning point in the movement for equal rights.

Sikh, Man, Rainbow, Turban
Jiwandeep Kohli, a San Diego-based neuroscientist who is bisexual and a Sikh, is ringing in this years Pride Month. Pixabay

In an interview to Buzzfeed News, Kohli said: “A few years ago I saw a photo of another Sikh man at a pride parade who had a few colours in his turban.

“I was looking at that and I realized the way I tie mine, it had the exact right number of layers to make a rainbow.”

He wore his rainbow turban to the San Diego Pride last year, but reshared it on Twitter for this year’s Pride Month.

There were a few people asking where they can get their own rainbow turban. Kohli in response, said he wanted them to know that turbans were a responsibility for Sikhs and it’s not the same as throwing on a rainbow hat.

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“I wouldn’t want people to have the impression that I’m just wearing it as an accessory,” he said. “A turban is a sign to the world that you’re a person the world can turn to for help.”

Kohli also runs a website called “Bearded Baker Co”, where he showcases his culinary prowess along with recipes for those who want to give his food a try. (IANS)