Survivors and family members of the in-mosque shooting victims in New Zealand spoke against Brenton Tarrant, the gunman. Around 90 people talked about the incident that caused 51 lives, creating a mix of a sense of grievance and defiance.
Last year, when Tarrant open-fired on the mosques, dozens of people were severely injured too. Brenton Tarrant is a 29-year old culprit accused of 51 murders, 40 murder attempts, and terrorism. People spoke on the 3rd day of a 4-day sentence, and Tarrant chose not to utter a single word before Thursday, the day of his sentencing.
Tarrant is to face a lifetime of imprisonment and that too without parole. This is the first time such a sentence is imposed on any culprit in New Zealand.
Many people cried in the courtroom on 26th August 2020 when the last victims and their relatives gave the statements.
Many statements popped up against Tarrant, the most powerful ones among them are as mentioned here.
Sara Qasem’s father, Albelfattah Qasem, was among the ones murdered at Al Noor Mosque. In her statement, she started with her introduction, followed by how his father was a glimmering man. He also asked Tarrant whether he remembers him!
She also spoke about her father’s last moments and stated that she still wonders whether he was in pain, frightened, and what his final thought was! She wishes to have been present there, holding his hands and telling him that everything will be alright. But she couldn’t!
She also added that she had some plans with her father to go on trips and smell his cooking that would not be fulfilled now. Later she started crying, concluding with a statement that these tears are not for Tarrant!
She is the wife of Zekeriya Tuyan, and she started with a statement that her sons asked why Tarrant killed his father! Zekeriya Tuyan battled for about 48 days before surrendering to the injuries. She stated that no money or nothing could bring her husband and her sons’ father back.
She added how she misses his jokes, cooking, snores, and everything, and how he was her best friend, comforter, bodyguard, and entertainer. Hamimah also told how his eldest son only has five years of memories of his father, and to make him understand the loss, she said to him that Tarrant is an ignorant man just like those children of the school who hits others to communicate and express.
She can see how her son misses his dad when other children play with theirs, and she does not know how to fill the vacant. Hamimah told Tarrant that now her sons’ father is not there to cherish their success, and Tarrant’s heinous act brought thousands of people from across New Zealand with them.
He lost his father, Haj. Ahad Nabi furiously called Tarrant a ‘Maggot.’ He also told Tarrant that his father must have been a sanitation worker that he became trash!
Maysoon Salama is the mother of Muhammad Ata Elayyan, who died at the Al Noor Mosque. She spoke on the last moments of her son and cried meanwhile.
She said that she feels like her heart broke millions of times, just like feeling the labor pain multiple times. She said that she imagines how her son must have felt during the attack, how he would have faced Tarrant, and what must have been in his mind while he realized that he would not last long!
She asked Tarrant how he takes the authority to kill 51 innocent people whose only crime in his eyes was being Muslims.
Wasseim Sati Ali Daragmih
Wasseim and his daughter were at the Mosque where they were shot. He resistantly approached and faced Tarrant directly, and he started wishing the afternoon to everyone to which he added ‘except you’ facing Tarrant.
He then said that they thankfully survived because Tarrant does not have much knowledge of using a gun. To this, Tarrant started laughing, then, after some moments, covered his mouth and stopped.
Wasseim then stated how Tarrant’s step went in vain to destroy the nation. He added that Tarrant must have thought that his actions will destroy the community and shake everyone’s faith, but he failed to do the same.
He concluded by pointing at Tarrant and saying that you ultimately failed, and instead, it made us all come together more determined and strengthened.