Wednesday 9/29/21
TERRORISM

Police shoot man dead after terror attack at New Zealand supermarket

Police shot dead the Sri Lankan national, who had been under police surveillance since 2016
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks to the media after the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs event at national museum Te Papa in Wellington, New Zealand, Wednesday, July 14, 2021. (AAP Image/Ben Mckay) NO ARCHIVING Photo: Ben Mckay/AAP/dpa
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speaks to the media. Photo: Ben Mckay/dpa.

A terrorist attack on shoppers at a New Zealand supermarket on Friday has left six people injured and the man responsible for the attack dead.

Police shot dead the Sri Lankan national, who had been under police surveillance since 2016, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said at a press conference.

Emergency services said six people had been injured in the attack in an Auckland supermarket. Three were critical, one person was in serious condition and two in moderate condition.

Ardern said "a violent extremist undertook a terrorist attack" and the man was a "known treat" to the country.

"What happened today was despicable it was hateful, it was wrong. It was carried out by an individual, not a faith ... gripped by ideology not supported by anyone here."

Police commissioner Andrew Coster said police were monitoring the man and were nearby when the attack happened.

The man had obtained a knife from the store and went on to injure six people.

"I'm satisfied that the staff involved did not only what we would expect in this situation, but did it with great courage," Coster said.

A series of gunshots

The reasons the man is known to agencies is subject to suppression orders and cannot be shared at this point, Ardern said.

Footage shared on social media showed shoppers warning about "someone with a knife in there" before a series of gunshots from police can be heard.

In a statement, the supermarket's general manager of safety Kiri Hannifin said the store was "devastated by what's taken place."

"Once again, our hearts are heavy knowing what our team and customers have witnessed and been through. Our thoughts are with those who were injured and their families, and we will be supporting all of our Lynnmall team."

In May, five people were stabbed in another of the supermarket's stores in the country's South Island.

Auckland, New Zealand's largest city, is under strict Covid-19 restrictions as the country grapples with an outbreak. Only essential stores, like supermarkets and medical centres, are allowed to open.

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