"She was searching through dead bodies... she was shot" Christchurch shooting survivor tears up over wife's last momentsRecord ID: 1463474
- Title: "She was searching through dead bodies... she was shot" Christchurch shooting survivor tears up over wife's last moments
- Date: 12th March 2020
- Summary: CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND (MARCH 12, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF CHRISTCHURCH SHOOTING SURVIVOR, FARID AHMED, GETTING OUT FROM HIS WHEELCHAIR AND INTO HIS VEHICLE WHEELCHAIR BEING MOVED INTO THE BACK OF VEHICLE AHMED CLOSING DOOR (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRISTCHURCH SHOOTING SURVIVOR, FARID AHMED, SAYING: "And I'm very thankful to god that, you know, I am still doing some good things. I have taken the tragedy as an opportunity to spread the message of peace and love. AHMED'S HAND ON STEERING WHEEL DRIVING TO UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO, CHRISTCHURCH CAMPUS VARIOUS OF AHMED GIVING SPEECH AT UNIVERSITY VARIOUS OF PEOPLE LISTENING TO SPEECH (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRISTCHURCH SHOOTING SURVIVOR, FARID AHMED, SAYING: "She could have run away that day. Three times she went out and came in. Third time she came into the main room, according to the eyewitnesses, she was searching for me through the piles, the piles of dead bodies. And then when she was going out she was shot. How selfless one person can be? To give her life for her loved ones." VARIOUS OF AHMED GIVING SPEECH VARIOUS OF PEOPLE IN AUDIENCE LISTENING (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRISTCHURCH SHOOTING SURVIVOR, FARID AHMED, SAYING: "Somebody showed me a picture, she was laying on her face. Her dead body. I never felt angry, but I ask what was her crime? She didn't hate anyone, she didn't hate anyone. And other little, little things, like when I'm driving I look at my side and I feel she is there and suddenly not there." VARIOUS OF AHMED SPEAKING SIGN READING (English): "UNIVERSITY OF OTAGO, CHRISTCHURCH" (SOUNDBITE) (English) POST GRADUATE UNIVERSITY STUDENT, CASSIE STYLIANOU, SAYING: "And I think it's just one of complete admiration is how I feel towards him, and also knowing that he is not just a man speaking for his own beliefs, that's what the Muslim faith and all those involved with the community, that is how they chose to live their life and that's really powerful. And everytime Farid speaks he reiterates that and it never feels like it's come from a selfish place or something with him, he's an extremely insightful and inspiration person and Christchurch just lucky to have him and so is New Zealand." VARIOUS OF AHMED CHATTING WITH PEOPLE (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHRISTCHURCH SHOOTING SURVIVOR, FARID AHMED, SAYING: "Also, that New Zealand has done wonderfully, the whole of mankind, all the countries, no one supported the hatred and everyone has been also working together to promote peace and tolerance in this world. So I feel privileged to go, to share, to listen, to learn, and we all have to be just more active because we don't want our future generations to suffer." VARIOUS OF AHMED LEAVING UNIVERSITY CAMPUS
- Keywords: Christchurch Farid Ahmed Islam March 15 New Zealand mosque prayers shooting
- Reuters ID: LVA001C4QVGP3
- Location: CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND
- City: CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND
- Country: New Zealand
- Duration: 00:05:41
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Topics: Crime/Law/Justice,Crime,Editors' Choice
- Story Text: A survivor of Christchurch's March 15 mass shooting last year, broke down on Thursday (March 12) over his wife, Husna's death, saying she shouldn't have died that fateful day, but went in three times to search for him through the piles of dead bodies.
Farid Ahmed, confined to a wheelchair, told Reuters that "I have taken the tragedy as an opportunity to spread the message of peace and love," as he drove to the University of Otago, Christchurch to give a speech.
Ahmed recalled seeing a photo of his wife's dead body face down in the mosque.
"I never felt angry but I ask what was her crime? She didn't hate anyone, she didn't hate anyone. And other little, little things, like when I'm driving I look at my side and I feel she is there and suddenly not there," he told Reuters through tears.
Ahmed has become a beacon of tolerance and hope since the shooting, meeting with world leaders including Donald Trump, Scott Morrison and writing a book.
Just days after the shooting that took his wife's life, he said he wanted to extend his forgiveness to the killer's direct family members and treat them as if they were his own.
Plans are underway for a prayer event on Friday (March 13) and a national remembrance ceremony on Sunday (March 15), expected to be attended by Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Brenton Tarrant, a suspected white supremacist has been charged for the attack. Tarrant has pleaded not guilty and will face a trial in June.
(Production: Stefica Nicol Bikes)
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