Minneapolis, St. Paul police upping presence at mosques after New Zealand attacks

One man who said he was at the Al Noor mosque told media the gunman burst in as worshippers were kneeling for prayers.

The unnamed man went home to retrieve his gun when the shooting broke out before returning to the Linwood mosque to engage the shooter. Police have disabled one and are in the process of disabling the other, he said. Two explosive devices attached to suspects' vehicles have now been found and they have been disarmed.

"The Minneapolis Police Department, under the direction of Chief Arradondo, have cultivated strong relationships with our religious leaders in each community in Minneapolis", Elder said in a statement.

Ardern said the suspect traveled around the world and was in New Zealand sporadically.

Since then, Christchurch's 400,000 residents have feared the elements more than people; an natural disaster in 2011 killed 185 and toppled many downtown buildings in what has been lovingly dubbed the "Garden City".

Ardern said 39 survivors remained hospitalized Saturday, with 11 critically wounded. One person taken to a hospital died from injuries sustained during the attack.

Christchurch Hospital said it was treating 48 patients for gunshot wounds, CNN reported. For many, this may not have been the place they were born.

Mr Sayed, who has been living in New Zealand for over 10 years, told Indian broadcaster NDTV that he had witnessed the man "creep up behind the shooter and hold him until his gun dropped".

On the sombre streets of Christchurch, Jeremy Mitchell said it was "surreal" such a massacre could happen in New Zealand.

Ms Ardern said the victims came from across the Muslim world, with Turkey, Bangladesh, Indonesia and Malaysia among the countries rendering consular assistance.

Huang Yan, the manager of the Christchurch branch of China's Southern Airlines, told Xinhua the mass shooting would bring negative impact on New Zealand tourism as Christchurch has just been recovered from the aftermath of the 2011 deadly quake. "Forgiving is going to take time", Omar Nabi, whose father Haji Daoud Nabi was gunned down, told reporters outside the Christchurch court.

Alsaleh moved to New Zealand from Palestine in 1996 and thought it was a safe place to live.

Police officers search the area near the Masjid Al Noor mosque site of one of the mass shootings at two mosques in Christchurch New Zealand Saturday

"While work is being done as to the chain of events that lead to both the holding of this gun licence and the possession of these weapons, I can tell you one thing right now; our gun laws will change", the New Zealand premier outlined.

"New Zealand is open to any religion and faith".

Armed police were deployed at several locations in all cities, unusual in a country where levels of gun violence are low.

Tarrant's occupation was not given on the charging document, and his address was provided as a place in Dunedin, more than 300 km south of Christchurch in New Zealand's South Island. Neighbouring Australia has virtually banned semi-automatic rifles from private ownership since a lone gunman killed 35 people with assault rifles in 1996.

Currently, New Zealand restricts the purchase of "military-style semi-automatic weapons" to those 18 or older.

"Even if you ask someone about the quake today they will start crying, so this tragedy will stay in the heart of everyone", says Raj Sandhu, 25, who moved to New Zealand from India three years ago, and came to the Al Noor mosque to pay his respects.

The AR-15 was used at Port Arthur, as well as a number of high-profile mass shootings in the United States. Mohan Ibrahim has lived in the country for five years, but says after the attack, he does not feel safe.

Local Muslims attend Friday prayers at the Windsor Mosque.

In New Zealand, police officers don't routinely carry firearms.

They targeted Muslims specifically.

Political across Asia and the Middle East voiced concern over the targeting of Muslims. "1.3 billion Muslims have collectively been blamed for any act of terror".

Vanessa Coleman