Christchurch mosque attack sentencing: Public gallery breaks into applause as victim tells gunman, 'we are not terrorists - you are a terrorist'

Warning: This article contains details that may disturb some people.

Brenton Tarrant is being sentenced at the High Court in Christchurch for the mosque killings on March 15, 2019. The hearing is ongoing.

There were rounds of applause in the High Court in Christchurch on Tuesday afternoon as a man chose not to give the mosque gunman the satisfaction of his impact statement.

Brenton Tarrant is appearing before Justice Cameron Mander for sentencing after admitting 51 charges of murder for the March 15, 2019, shootings at two Christchurch mosques, as well as 40 charges of attempted murder, and a charge of committing a terrorist act.

As the afternoon session began, Mirwais Waziri, one of the attempted murder victims, said he did not wish to read his victim impact statement, but wished to speak after seeing no sign of remorse from Tarrant when the detailed Crown summary of facts was read on Monday.

The public gallery broke into clapping when he said Tarrant had shown he was the terrorist and not the community he had attacked.

"We are not terrorists. We have suffered, but we are stronger than before. You are the loser and we are the winners. You proved to the world that you are a terrorist."

He said his comments were "enough" instead of his victim impact statement because Tarrant would remember them forever. There was applause again as he finished.

Zuhair Darwish, whose brother Kamel Darwish was killed, told 29-year-old Australian Tarrant he "lived like a rat" and deserved the death penalty. 

"You have destroyed your own future. You will pay for what you did in this life and the other, sooner or later. 

"You acted like a coward and you are a coward. You live like a rat and you are going to die alone".

Mirwais Waziri in court on Tuesday.
Mirwais Waziri in court on Tuesday. Photo credit: Pool

A fair punishment would be the death penalty, he said. He knew that there was no death penalty for humans in New Zealand law, but Tarrant did not deserve to be treated or judged like a human.

Farisha Razak told the court of her father Ashraf Ali being killed while on holiday from Fiji. She said the gunman was "a monster who had united the whole world".

She said Tarrant had made a game out of people's lives. He was a loser who had been rejected. 

"Nobody wants you, buddy," she told him. 

"You deserve to not see the light of day," she said, adding the death penalty would be too easy, and Tarrant deserved to suffer for ruining the lives of so many happy families. 

Hazem Mohammed called for the judge to give Tarrant the highest sentence possible "so he never sees the sun. 

"This man has to stay in the prison forever."

Nathan Smith, of the UK, said he had been in the mosque during the attack and had held a three-year-old who had been killed. He told Tarrant: "I am white, Muslim, and proud. 

Brenton Tarrant being brought into the court on Monday.
Brenton Tarrant being brought into the court on Monday. Photo credit: Pool

"All you have done is cause great shame for Europeans all around the world."

Tarrant smirked when Smith said he would have plenty of time, and he should use it to read the Quran. 

The sentencing continues on Wednesday.