How This Man Helped Stop The New Zealand Mosque Shooter | NowThis

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Meet Abdul Aziz, the incredible man who chased away the New Zealand mosque shooter, potentially saving dozens of lives.
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Meet the man who likely stopped the New Zealand mosque shooter and saved dozens of lives. Abdul Aziz, a father of 4, was praying with his children on March 15 when a shooter entered his mosque and started firing at worshippers. Aziz said many worshippers were thrown off and didn’t initially recognize the sounds as gunshots.

‘We all thought there was a fire cracker or something, then someone, brothers, screaming and saying some of brothers and sisters is getting shot. I heard more gun shots and I thought that is not fire crackers or anything, so I just ran outside.’

He said his first instinct was to distract him in any way possible, so he ran out of the mosque screaming, to try and draw attention to himself. Aziz says he then threw a credit card machine at the attacker.

‘First I thought, you know, he's with the army clothes it can be a bad person, you know, when he started swearing at me I knew it's not that good boy, it's the bad boy, and I just threw the EFTPOS machine (credit card reader) on him.’

He believes the credit card machine temporarily confused the shooter, who dropped his gun and ran to his car to get another one leaving Aziz to grab the gun that was left on the ground.

‘He dropped his gun and ran, and I chased him. I chased him and saw him in his car, and what I did, I had that shotgun in my hand and I throw on him like an arrow. I throw the shotgun and that shotgun actually smashed his window and I could see he was frightened. Then he swear at me and he just took off.’

‘I could hear my two boys were saying, 'daddy please come back inside, please come back inside', I told them you guys hold out I'll be alright.’

Moments after the shooter left, the 28-year-old Australian man was arrested and later charged with murder. Unfortunately, the shooter was able to kill 8 people at the Linwood Mosque before he fled but witnesses say Aziz’s actions saved them from even more deaths.

‘He went after him, and he managed to overpower him, and that’s how we were saved.. If he managed to come [back] into the mosque, then we would all probably be gone.’ -- Latef Alabi, the Linwood mosque’s acting imam

In addition to the deaths at the Linwood Mosque, another 42 died at the Masjid Al Noor mosque leaving a total of 50 people dead as a result of the shooting, in an apparent white supremacist attack.

‘I saw everybody was frightened and everybody was frightened and I told everybody, 'brothers get up he is gone he is no more here. He is gone'. Then everybody is stand up and we know who got injured and we know who's got, died and actually it was a very bad time, a very bad time.’

Aziz had been living in New Zealand with his family for 2 years prior to the attack . The Afghan family had moved from Australia after experiencing racism in the country.

‘I’ve been to a lot of countries and this is one of the beautiful ones.’

#NewZealand #Christchurch #MosqueAttacks #AbdulAziz

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