Mosque attacks: Islamic Women's Council welcome coroner's information

7:12 am on 7 January 2021

The Islamic Women's Council is relieved families of mosque attack victims will get more information from New Zealand's chief coroner.

People gather outside Al Noor Mosque

People gather outside Al Noor Mosque Photo: RNZ/ Dan Cook

Judge Deborah Marshall wrote to victims families last month to offer access to as much information as they want.

She said together with the police she would make two packages of information available to families.

One with a general level of detail and another with more specific information about how a particular person died.

The information will include photos of the victims as they entered the mosque for prayers on 15 March, a diagram of where each victim was when they died and a forensic pathologist report.

Islamic Women's Council spokeswoman Anjum Rahman said it will be tough reading for families but will help them in their requests for a coronial inquest.

"I think the families have an important decision to make on whether they want the coroner to make further inquiries and conduct and inquest and in order for them to do that they do need full information - so it's vital all of the information is provided.

"We welcome that the coroner is providing this information and that she's giving families the opportunity ot go back to her to ask questions and point out what's missed," Rahman said.

She said it's been a hard process for families to digest the contents of The Royal Commission of Inquiry Report and now going through this process without any legal representation.

"Ideally they would have free legal representation that would help them go through all of this information.

"I don't think they have adequate advice."

Rahman said it's important a coronial inquest takes place in order to look into things the royal commission missed.

"It didn't look at how this individual was radicalised and what interactions they had through social media, we know that YouTube was a factor but the royal commission didn't look at it.

"If we want to learn from this and prevent such things from happening again its really important that this work is done by the chief coroner," she said.

The chief coroner said if there are any issues that cannot be resolved through this information sharing process, an inquest may follow.

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