Meghan, Harry, Kate and William send condolences to people of New Zealand after terror attacks

Danielle Stacey
Royal Correspondent
Meghan and Harry visited New Zealand last year, while Kate and William travelled there in 2014 [Photos: Getty/PA]

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have sent out a joint statement, with a message of condolence to the people affected by the “horrifying” terror attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand.

At least 49 people have been killed in a terror attack on two mosques in central Christchurch. 

One man was arrested and charged with murder in what appeared to be a carefully planned racist attack. 

The royal couples’ joint statement read: “Our hearts go out to the families and friends of the people who lost their lives in the devastating attack in Christchurch.

“We have all been fortunate to spend time in Christchurch and have felt the warm, open-hearted and generous spirit that is core to its remarkable people.

“No person should ever have to fear attending a sacred place of worship.

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“This senseless attack is an affront to the people of Christchurch and New Zealand, and the broader Muslim community. It is a horrifying assault on a way of life that embodies decency, community and friendship.

“We know that from this devastation and deep mourning, the people of New Zealand will unite to show that such evil can never defeat compassion and tolerance.

“We send our thoughts and prayers to everyone in New Zealand today.”

Police cordon off the area in front of the Masjid al Noor mosque after a shooting incident in Christchurch [Photo: Getty]

Both couples have visited New Zealand during their royal tours. Meghan and Harry spent four days in the country at the end of their overseas visit to the South Pacific in October 2018.

Kate and William travelled to New Zealand in 2014, along with a then eight-month-old Prince George.

The Queen also sent a message of sympathy, saying she was “deeply saddened by the appalling events in Christchurch.”

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh in New Zealand in 2002 [Photo: Getty]

She added: “Prince Philip and I send our condolences to the families and friends of those who have lost their lives.

“I also pay tribute to the emergency services and volunteers who are providing support to those who have been injured. At this tragic time, my thoughts and prayers are with all New Zealanders.”

The Prince of Wales called it an “appalling atrocity” in a message released by Clarence House. 

He said: “Both my wife and I were utterly horrified to hear of the most barbaric attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, which resulted in the cruel and tragic loss of so many people’s lives.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ families, the first responders, the people of Christchurch and all New Zealanders at this most heartbreaking of times.”