© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2019

Pro-Trump man says "all muslims are terrorists" outside mosque

Isobel Prasad

Police are on the hunt for a man spreading hate speech outside the Al Noor mosque.

Police say they are searching for a man dressed in a black 'Trump for New Zealand' t-shirt, who stood outside Al Noor Mosque yelling racial abuse as worshippers left the Asr (afternoon) prayer on Wednesday.  

A facebook post on the Muslims in Christchurch and Canterbury page says the man was outside the mosque for 15 minutes, saying "all Muslims are terrorists" and need to leave. He was also seen kicking and damaging the memorial items along the fenceline of Al Noor. 

Last month, 50 people were killed in a terror attack on two mosques in Christchurch, with 40 of the victims killed inside the Al Noor Mosque. 

According to the post, the police officers guarding the mosque "let the man go" claiming they couldn't arrest him as he didn't break any laws. 

56526718 10156015017425927 8507949077978152960 n
Picture of the man seen on the Facebook post Adrian Wright

Canterbury District Commander Superintendent, John Price says the situation is being treated extremely seriously. He says two police officers were present outside the mosque at the time, and police are reviewing their response to the incident. 

"Our community has no tolerance for those who target or victimise others because of their identity, and nor does Police.

"This is especially so for members of our Muslim community who are already dealing with so much," he says. 

A woman, who doesn't want to be named, says she saw the man being escorted away from the mosque by police, but says members of the mosque were shocked he was not arrested for his actions at the scene. She says it has made her wary of her surroundings

She says it has made her wary of her surroundings when visiting the mosque. 

"The fact that the man has the audacity to do this in front of police, it makes me worry about what could happen once police are no longer at the mosque,".

Price says the community at Al Noor Mosque were understandably shaken by the man's behaviour.