Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has called on Islamic countries to join hands and find the “overt and covert” sponsors of such terrorist attacks as the one against Muslims in New Zealand.
In a Friday message, Rouhani strongly condemned the terrorist and racist attack on Muslim worshippers in New Zealand, and described the massacre as a barbaric and painful incident which broke the hearts of all Muslim people in the world, especially the Iranian nation.
“This barbaric crime, which resulted in the martyrdom and injury of a number of innocent and defenseless worshippers, is another proof of the need for an all-out fight against terrorism and hate-mongering toward other religions and ethnic groups, and the Islamophobia which is common in the West, and unfortunately fueled by certain Western governments,” Rouhani said.
“This crime indicated that terrorism is still among the important issues of the world, and needs an integrated fight and a united approach by all countries against violence and extremism in any part of the world,” he noted.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran is still committed to decisive fight against terrorism and racism, and is sure that, thanks to the unity and solidarity of Muslim people, such blind and aimless plots by the enemies would result in nothing but further disgrace for them,” he added.
Rouhani also called on the international community, particularly Muslim states, to show serious reaction to these anti-human crimes, and “disgrace the overt and covert sponsors of such moves.”
The Iranian president also lashed out at certain Western mainstream media for their “unprofessional” and “inhumane” coverage of the terrorist attack, and described it as another proof of their racist attitude and double-standard policies even towards the lives of human beings.
Earlier in the day, Iranian ambassador to London Hamid Baeidinejad had slammed the Persian service of the BBC for refusing to use the term “terrorist attack” in reference to the New Zealand slaughter.
“In BBC Persian’s view, there is only one criterion for describing an attack as a ‘terrorist’ one, and that’s when referring to attacks carried out against the UK; therefore, a knife crime in London is called a ‘terrorist attack’, but the massacre in New Zealand is just an ‘attack’,” he said in a tweet.
At least one gunman killed 49 people and wounded more than 40 during Friday prayers at two New Zealand mosques in the country’s worst ever mass shooting, which Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern condemned as terrorism.
The Australian gunman behind the massacre, identified as Brenton Tarrant, broadcast live footage on Facebook of the attack on one mosque in the city of Christchurch, mirroring the carnage played out in video games, after publishing a “manifesto” in which he denounced immigrants, calling them “invaders”.
In his manifesto, Tarrant said he saw US President Donald Trump as “symbol of renewed white identity and common purpose.”