Sunday December 15, 2019
Home Lead Story New Zealand P...

New Zealand PM Urges Lawmakers to Never Utter the Name of Accused in Mosque Attack

“I implore you: Speak the names of those who were lost, rather than the name of the man who took them,” Ardern said

0
//
jacinda ardern, new zealand
Another post tagged to Ardern and the New Zealand Police had the same photo with "next it's you". VOA

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is urging lawmakers to join her in never uttering the name of the man accused of killing 50 worshippers at two Christchurch mosques last Friday.

During an emotional address before Parliament Tuesday, Prime Minister Ardern said the suspected gunman “is a terrorist, he is a criminal, he is an extremist, but he will, when I speak, be nameless.”

“I implore you: Speak the names of those who were lost, rather than the name of the man who took them,” Ardern said.

Authorities have accused 28-year-old Australian Brenton Harris Tarrant of committing the horrific attack. He is the only person in custody linked to the killings and has been charged with murder.

Tarrant has not yet entered a plea. Media reports say he has refused a lawyer and will represent himself in court proceedings. His next court appearance is April 5.

muslim, christchurch
Firearms and accessories are seen on display at Gun City gunshop in Christchurch, New Zealand, March 19, 2019. VOA

Prime Minister Ardern said her government will launch an inquiry into whether the country’s law enforcement and intelligence agencies missed any signs about Tarrant and his intentions.She also expressed her frustrations about U.S.-based social media giant Facebook for allowing Tarrant to livestream the attack, as well as the fact that the footage was still online four days later.

“We cannot simply sit back and accept that these platforms just exist and what is said is not the responsibility of the place where they are published,” Ardern said in her speech to parliament.“They are the publisher, not just the postman. There cannot be a case of all profit, no responsibility.”

Facebook says it removed 1.5 million versions of the video of the massacre in during the first 24 hours after the attack.

Ardern has said she was one of more than 30 recipients of a 74-page white nationalist manifesto emailed by Tarrant nine minutes before his alleged attacks. In the manifesto, Tarrant allegedly denounced Muslims and called immigrants “invaders.”

Meanwhile, relatives of the dead are anxiously for awaiting authorities to release their bodies so they can bury their loved ones.The prime minister said Monday the bodies of all 50 victims will be returned to their families by Wednesday for burial as soon as possible in accordance with Muslim tradition.

She said that six disaster victim identification experts have flown in from Australia to help in the identification process.

muslim, christchurch
A police officer stands guard outside the Linwood mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, March 19, 2019. VOA

About 60 volunteers, some who have traveled from Australia, are helping with the ritual cleansing of the victims before burial.

The names of the victims have not been made public, although a preliminary list has been shared with relatives.

ALSO READ: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern Claims, “Within 10 Days Of This Horrific Act Of Terrorism We Will Have Announced Reforms Which Will, I Make Our Community Safer”

Thirty people remain hospitalized in the Christchurch hospital, nine of them in critical condition.A 4-year-old child in critical condition has been transferred to a hospital in Auckland for further treatment.

Prime Minister Ardern said Monday she will reveal the decisions her Cabinet members have reached about reforming New Zealand’s gun laws within the following days.

Mass shootings and violent crime are rare in New Zealand, a country of nearly five million people. Until Friday, the country’s worst mass shooting was in 1990, when a gunman killed 13 people in the small town of Aramoana. (VOA)

Next Story

NZ’s Privacy Commissioner Labels Facebook as “Morally Bankrupt Pathological Liars”

"I have deleted the tweets promoting my discussion about Mark Zuckerberg's interview because of the volume of toxic and misinformed traffic they prompted," Edwards mentioned

0
facebook
"Facebook cannot be trusted. They are morally bankrupt pathological liars who enable genocide (Myanmar), facilitate foreign undermining of democratic institutions," Edwards tweeted. Pixabay

New Zealand’s privacy commissioner John Edwards has labelled Facebook as “morally bankrupt pathological liars” after the social media platform’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg tried to play down the Facebook livestreaming of Christchurch shooting that killed 50 people.

“Facebook cannot be trusted. They are morally bankrupt pathological liars who enable genocide (Myanmar), facilitate foreign undermining of democratic institutions,” Edwards tweeted late Sunday.

“(They) allow the live streaming of suicides, rapes and murders, continue to host and publish the mosque attack video, allow advertisers to target ‘Jew haters’ and other hateful market segments and refuse to accept any responsibility for any content or harm. They #DontGiveAZuck,” Edwards said in a follow-up tweet.

He later deleted the tweets, saying he was bombarded with toxic traffic on his Twitter account.

facebook
“I have deleted the tweets promoting my discussion about Mark Zuckerberg’s interview because of the volume of toxic and misinformed traffic they prompted,” Edwards mentioned. Wikimedia

According to a report in New Zealand Herald, Edwards lashed out at Zuckerberg after the Facebook CEO, during an interview at America’s ABC TV network, “poured cold water on even a slight delay for Facebook Live, saying it would ‘break’ the service which is often used for two-way communication”.

The Facebook livestreaming of the New Zealand terror attack sparked global outrage. The video was viewed over 4,000 times before it was removed. The video was later shared in millions on other social media platforms, including Twitter and YouTube.

In an interview with Radio New Zealand on Monday, Edwards said Zuckerberg’s “greater good” argument was “disingenuous” because “he can’t tell us – or won’t tell us, how many suicides are livestreamed, how many murders, how many sexual assaults”.

“I’ve asked Facebook exactly that last week and they simply don’t have those figures or won’t give them to us,” he added. Edwards also asked Facebook to hand over names of people who shared the alleged gunman’s video to NZ Police which the social media giant refused to share.

facebook
Edwards also asked Facebook to hand over names of people who shared the alleged gunman’s video to NZ Police which the social media giant refused to share. VOA

After New Zealand, Britain has gone tough on Facebook when it comes to livestreaming. Internet providers and tech giants like Facebook and Google will be compelled to remove violent content in a sweeping new law passed in Australia last week.

Under the new law, which passed both houses of Parliament, obligations will be placed on internet companies to stop the spread of violent material. Failure to do so could see executives face up to three years in jail, or fines of up to 10 per cent of the platform’s annual turnover.

ALSO READ: How Mark ‘Zucked’ Facebook and its Brand Image

Social media firms, including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, also face hefty fines or ban in Britain if they fail to remove harmful content quickly under new laws.

The new “duty of care” laws could even hold social media executives personally liable for terrorist and child abuse content on their platforms. (IANS)