New Zealand police arrest man in Christchurch after reports of bomb threat


New Zealand police arrest man in Christchurch after reports of bomb threat
Armed police patrol outside a mosque in central Christchurch. Photo: AP

In Summary

  • New Zealand police arrested a man in Christchurch on Tuesday following reports of a possible bomb threat in the city, where 50 people were killed in attacks by a lone gunman on two mosques in March.
  • Fifty people were killed and dozens wounded in attacks on the Al Noor and Linwood mosques during Friday prayers in Christchurch on March 15, the worst peace-time shooting in New Zealand history.

New Zealand police arrested a man in Christchurch on Tuesday following reports of a possible bomb threat in the city, where 50 people were killed in attacks by a lone gunman on two mosques in March.

Police cordoned off streets in the Phillipstown area of the city on New Zealand’s South Island, with a bomb disposal team, ambulance and fire and emergency crews sent to the scene, according to a police statement.

“A 33-year-old man has been arrested and is currently speaking to police in regards to the incident,” the statement said.

A no-fly zone was also established, it said.

No further details were available about the nature of the incident but New Zealand media reported there had been a potential bomb threat.

The New Zealand Herald said police were called due to “threats about an explosive device”.

A spokesman for the St John Ambulance service said an ambulance was on standby at the request of police but had not treated any patients.

Fifty people were killed and dozens wounded in attacks on the Al Noor and Linwood mosques during Friday prayers in Christchurch on March 15, the worst peace-time shooting in New Zealand history.

Authorities have charged Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, a suspected white supremacist, with 50 counts of murder.

The mosque attacks shook New Zealand to its core and prompted the government to quickly tighten gun laws.

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