Thursday, May 23, 2019 | ePaper
NZ PM Ardern issues statement on Lanka, draws comparisons to Christchurch attacks
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern issued a statement on Tuesday night condemning the Easter Sunday terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka and drawing comparisons to last month's Christchurch mosques shootings.
Officials in Sri Lanka say at least 138 people have died after six simultaneous bombs ignited at churches and high-end hotels. Hours later, two more blasts occurred in the outskirts of the capital, a military spokesperson confirmed.
"New Zealand condemns all acts of terrorism, and our resolve has only been strengthened by the attack on our soil on the 15th of March," the Prime Minister said. "To see an attack in Sri Lanka while people were in churches and at hotels is devastating.
"New Zealand rejects all forms of extremism and stands for freedom of religion and the right to worship safely. Collectively we must find the will and the answers to end such violence.''Â The brief statement concluded with the Prime Minister saying she wanted offer "New Zealand's sympathy and support" to Sri Lanka.
New Zealand's Minsitry of Foreign Affairs and Trade says there are currently 115 Kiwis registered as being in Sri Lanka. They are advised to exercise a high degree of vigilance in public areas and to follow any advice issued by local authorities, the spokesperson said.