'My father was a hero,' says son of New Zealand Islamophobic attack victim

Son of Haji Daoud Nabi speaks in Turkiye at peace symposium honoring father's last words: 'Hello, brother'


Anadolu Agency March 17, 2022
On March 15, 2019, Brenton Tarrant, an Australian white supremacist, killed 51 Muslim worshippers and injured 40 more at the Al Noor Mosque and Linwood Islamic Centre in Christchurch. Anadolu Agency

ANKARA:

Yama Nabi, son of Haji Daoud Nabi, one of the victims of a terror attack targeting two mosques in New Zealand, continues to voice his longing for his father.

On March 15, 2019, Brenton Tarrant, an Australian white supremacist, killed 51 Muslim worshippers and injured 40 more at the Al Noor Mosque and Linwood Islamic Centre in Christchurch.

He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole last year in the first such ruling ever handed down in the island nation.

Haji Daoud Nabi appeared in the terrorist's live stream of the attack, unknowingly welcoming him into the mosque with the words: "Hello, brother."

He was among the first to be killed.

On Wednesday, activists and victims' family members attended a symposium organized by a Turkish non-governmental organization and university under the auspices of the country's Culture and Tourism Ministry to honor the victims, including Nabi.

At the event, titled "Hello Brother: World Peace Symposium" and held in the capital Ankara, his son recounted to Anadolu Agency what happened on the day of the terror attack.

He was driving in his car with his daughter when the attack erupted. After hearing the gunshots, he pulled over and told his daughter to stay in the vehicle, he said.

Trying to discern where the shots were coming from, son Nabi said when he got the news of the attack on the mosque, he attempted to reach his father by phone, but could not.

When he got to the mosque and asked for his father, the community said his father was there when the attack took place, but that they later found his father's body. "My father was a helper for his son, for the Muslim community, he was a leader, a hero."

I miss him so much

"I missed him so much. My father was a hero," said Nabi, noting that three years had passed since the incident took place.

Expressing how difficult it was to lose his father for his family, he underlined that even in Haji Daoud Nabi's last words, he represented Islam and peace.

Without unity, Muslims are weak

Journalist Lauren Booth, Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair's sister-in-law, who converted to Islam, said she believes the family of Haji Daoud Nabi had yet to heal and was still suffering from the crisis and shock of the attack.

Referring to the increasing Islamophobia in the US and Europe, Lauren said that "without unity, Muslims are weak."

She underlined that young people who know Islam and live in cities like Paris, London, and New York would play the greatest role against Islamophobia.

The Hello Brother: World Peace Symposium was organized by the International Knowledge and Perception Association and Haci Bayram Veli University in Ankara.

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