Refugee group confirms two Syrians killed in attacks

6:41 pm on 17 March 2019

A refugee group has confirmed two Syrians are among the dead in Christchurch.

Christchurch Botanic Gardens wall with hundreds of flowers laid in memory of those lost in the mosques shooting


Syrian Solidarity New Zealand confirmed Khalid Mustafa and his eldest son, 14-year-old Hamza, were two of the victims from the mosque shootings.

Another son, 13-year-old Zaed, was in a stable condition after a six-hour operation at Christchurch Hospital.

Syrian Solidarity said the family arrived in New Zealand in 2018 - a place they thought was their safe haven.

Their home-country has been the site of an ongoing civil war for the past eight years.

Mr Mustafa's wife, Salwa Mustafa, said the family, originally from Syria spent time in Jordan but came to New Zealand as refugees in July last year.

"When we were asking about New Zealand, 'what is that country' they said it's the... safest country in the world, the most wonderful country you can go... 'you will start very wonderful life there,' but it wasn't."

Zaed Mustafa's father and brother were killed during the Christchurch terror attacks.

Zaed Mustafa is recovering in hospital. Photo: Diego Opatowski

Zaed Mustafa and his younger sister were only notified today that their father had died.

It was unsure if the body had been returned to the family.