By Erdogan Cagatay Zontur and Zuhal Demirci</p> <p>ANKARA (AA) - Friday’s attacks on two mosques in New Zealand that left at least 49 people dead are a devastating reminder of the consequences of letting hatred and demonization go unchecked, according to Amnesty International.</p> <p>“This is one of the darkest days in New Zealand’s history. The attackers who unleashed their deadly hatred and racism upon women, men, and children as they took part in Friday prayers have thrown us all into shock and grief,” Kumi Naidoo, the rights group’s secretary general, said in a written statement Friday.</p> <p>He added: “This is also a moment of reckoning for leaders across the world who have encouraged or turned a blind eye to the scourge of Islamophobia."</p> <p>He stressed that “the politics of demonization” had cost 49 people their lives.</p> <p>“Reports that the attackers followed a white supremacist manifesto must galvanize world leaders to start standing against this hate-filled ideology,” he added.</p> <p>Naidoo said Amnesty International stands with “all those who have lost loved ones, and vow to unite against this hate.”</p> <p>"The New Zealand we believe in is one that thrives as a multicultural society, welcomes refugees and migrants, and respects the rights of everyone to practise their religion in peace,” Naidoo said, and added: “These attacks can only strengthen our resolve to fight for a society built around peace, hope and justice.”
Gunmen opened fire on worshippers during Friday prayers at the Al Noor and Linwood mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.
Four suspects — three men and one woman — have been detained so far.