A man whose wife was shot as she led children and women out of the mosque during massacre said he has forgiven the gunman.
Farid Ahmen, a disabled man who wheeled himself out of the mosque after 28-year-old Brenton Tarrant stormed the building and started shooting people, said he couldn’t hate him.
He told the New Zealand Herald: “I was asked ”how do you feel about the person who killed your wife?” and I said ‘I love that person because he is a human, a brother of mine’.’”
He admitted he didn’t support what the culprit did but he tried to rationalize the mental state of the shooter.
“Maybe he was hurt, maybe something happened to him in his life … but the bottom line is, he is a brother of mine,” he expressed.
“I have forgiven him and I am sure if my wife was alive she would have done the same thing.”
His wife, 44-year-old Husna Ahmed, had shouted at worshippers to go outside with her as the gunman sprayed the lobby with bullets.
As soon as she successfully saved all the people she could, she came back for her husband. But once back inside, she was hit by a bullet and died.
Mr. Ahmed had already made it into the car park where he hid behind his car. He was forced to sit silently as worshippers frantically jumped over a fence, looking for a safe place.
He also recalled locking eyes with his friend who ran straight passed him. Mr. Ahmed understood his friend’s decision to run away.
After the shooter left, Mr. Ahmed wheeled himself back inside and helped anyone he could. The police arrived and told him about his wife.
Despite losing his wife and what he witnessed, he said he still wished he could embrace the shooter.
“I was trying to grieve and it came to me then that I wish I could give him a hug. Some people might call me crazy but I speak from my heart, I am not pretending – if I got an opportunity I would hug him,” he expressed.
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