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Accused N.Zealand attacker apparent Karadzic fan

Footage of accused attacker shows Serb nationalist symbols and song praising convicted Serbian war criminal Radovan Karadzic

Talha Öztürk   | 15.03.2019
Accused N.Zealand attacker apparent Karadzic fan

BELGRADE, Serbia

One of the accused gunmen in Friday’s deadly terror attack on two mosques in New Zealand appears to be an admirer of a convicted Serbian war criminal, based on his reported livestream of the attack.

In the video, Brenton Tarrant, a 28-year-old Australian citizen, is seen apparently on his way to the attack -- which killed 49 people -- listening to a far-right song praising Radovan Karadzic, the Bosnian Serb leader convicted of grave war crimes.

After leading the Serbs in the Bosnian war (1992-1995), in 2016 Karadzic was sentenced to 40 years in prison for genocide and various war crimes.

In his car, Tarrant can be seen playing a song called Serbia Strong/Remove Kebab in his car.

"Karadzic you lead Serbs, show them that they are fearless," say the song’s lyrics.

He also posted a 73-page manifesto which said the motive for the attack was to “create fear,” and included anti-migrant hate speech, calls for the killing of Muslims, and white supremacist rhetoric.

The manifesto also included Balkan nationalist symbols and a statement on U.S. involvement in Kosovo's 2008 declaration of independence from Serbia.

The names of historical Serbian figures who fought against the Ottomans can also be seen written on the guns Tarant allegedly used in the attack.

Ivica Dacic, Serbia’s foreign minister, condemned the New Zealand attack on Friday, adding: "Serbia has nothing to do with it.”

“We condemn this type of abuse, which is detrimental to Serbian interests, and we will arrest anyone suspected of having this kind of interest," Dacic told reporters.

Dacic expressed condolences to the families of the victims of the attacks, saying they resulted from a global evil that must be fought with a united front.

"I want to point out that many countries tolerated terrorist movements, calling them liberators, helping them develop and fighting them only when attacks started around the world," he added.

Gunmen opened fire on worshippers during Friday prayers at the Al Noor and Linwood mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, with one of the shooters livestreaming the incident on social media. The footage has since been removed from social media platforms.

At least four people have been taken into custody since the attacks.

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