‘More important than ever for us to stand together’: Thousands of Australian Muslims defy increased terror threat levels to pray for the 49 victims of the twin Christchurch mosque attacks
- Vigilante Australians attended prayers at one of the country’s biggest mosques
- Emotional scenes were capture as a defiant stream of worshippers attended
- They headed to Lakemba mosque in Sydney’s south-west on Friday evening
- An increased police presence were seen surrounding the mosque before prayer
- NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Opposition Leader Michael Daley were there
There was a sombre mood at one of Australia’s biggest mosques tonight more than 1000 Muslims prayed for the victims of New Zealand’s worst terror attack which killed 49 – most of whom followed the same faith.
Emotional scenes were captured as a defiant stream of Muslims ignored increased terror threats to Lakemba mosque in Sydney’s south-west to attend Friday evening prayers.
Dozens of police surrounded the mosque before the prayers began at 7.17pm to ensure everyone was safe.
Vigilante Australians attended prayers at one of the country’s biggest mosques hours after New Zealand’s biggest terrorist attack, where 49 people were killed
Emotional scenes were captured as a defiant stream of mosque goers headed to Lakemba mosque in Sydney’s south-west to attend Friday evening prayers
A male worshipper planning to attend the evening prayers said he was at a loss for words
The prayers come just hours after the horrific Christchurch terrorist attack. The mood at the Lakemba mosque was sombre yet resilient.
New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Leader of the Opposition Michael Daley were among multiple politicians in attendance to pay their respect.
Just before 6pm one marked police car was seen circling the mosque, while another was parked outside.
Minutes before the prayers were set to commence police arrived, with some patrolling the premises on foot while at least six surveyed the area in their cruisers.
A young woman outside the mosque told Daily Mail Australia: ‘I’m confused as to how and why someone would do this [terrorist attack].’
‘It’s more important than ever for us to attend prayers. Now is the most important time. It’s always been an issue but nothing’s been done. It’s the most important time to stand together.’
A male worshipper planning to attend the evening prayers said he was at a loss for words.
The prayers come just hours after the horrific Christchurch terrorist attack, yet the mood at the Lakemba mosque was sombre yet resilient
‘My blood has gone cold the only thing that will calm me down is the head of that person,’ he said.
A young female worshipper watched the horrific video and warned others not to open it if it’s sent to them.
‘Don’t watch it. I was studying at university and my friends sent it to me. I thought it was a call of duty game. I was worried about coming today but I thought I should,’ she said.
A speaker at Lakemba mosque during the evening prayers said those who attended Friday prayers in Christchurch were ‘the most innocent people’ but were targeted by the young Australian man.
An increased police presence were seen surrounding the mosque before the prayers were set to begin at 7.17pm
A young woman outside the mosque told Daily Mail Australia: ‘I’m confused as to how and why someone would do this [terrorist attack]’
‘What is the crime they’re doing? Nothing,’ he said, following the prayers.
‘People are very extremist in their thinking. They want revenge from nothing. They think by doing something like that is revenge.’
He warned those who attended the prayers not to be afraid.
‘We need our government to take some action. We need to see our politicians and police doing their job in a good way. We put our hands with our politicians especially the good ones,’ he said.
‘This is an act of terror targeted towards Muslims at the time of their prayers.
‘Not going to close the doors of our mosques and we’ll continue our daily prayers. We’ll stand in solidarity.’