People gather to form a human image in solidarity with the NZ mosque attack victims in Jhang on Friday. AFP
Thousands of Pakistanis clad in white gathered in the central city of Jhang on Friday to make a human image of Christchurch's Al Noor Mosque, where 50 people were killed by a white supremacist four weeks ago.
Drone images showed worshippers standing in formation, their snow-white traditional shalwar kameez and prayer caps in stark contrast to the emerald green of a public field, as a second group formed the words "Islam is peace" nearby.
Huge New Zealand and Pakistani flags were also displayed along with a giant banner which read: "Solidarity with the martyrs of Christchurch from Pakistan."
The tribute was organised by the Muslim Institute, a non-government organisation aimed at promoting peace and stability in the Muslim world, which also released the drone footage.
Brenton Tarrant, a 28-year-old Australian and self-avowed white supremacist, has been charged with 50 counts of murder and 39 of attempted murder after opening fire at the Linwood and Al Noor mosques on March 15.
Nine of the victims were of Pakistani origin. One, Naeem Rashid, was posthumously given an award for bravery by Pakistan after he apparently tried to tackle the gunman before being shot.
Tribute organisers praised the New Zealand government after what had been a "very tough time" for Muslims in the country — especially Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Her response "not only soothed the wounds of Muslims but also assured them that Muslims in their country are safe," Sahibzada Sultan Ahmad Ali, a religious scholar and one of the organisers, told AFP.
"We worked really hard to make this model," one participant, Noor Hassan, told AFP of the tribute.
"It was so pleasant that we were ready to stand like this for the whole day," he added.
The special visa category "recognises the impact of the tragedy on the lives of those most affected, and gives people currently on temporary and resident visas some certainty" about their status, Immigration New Zealand said in a statement.
Mohammed also praised New Zealand’s communities for their solidarity with their Muslim neighbours against the hate crime.
The Muslim community was further shaken this week when a 33-year-old man, wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with the name of US President Donald Trump, shouted abuse at worshippers at the Al Noor mosque.
The government said its goal to increase the number of medical students by 4,000 over the next 10 years was necessary to better prepare for public health crises like the coronavirus pandemic.
The plan, which will enable citywide testing for the first time, is likely to be implemented in two weeks at the earliest, Chief Executive Lam said.
Even as India has maintained comparatively low mortality rates, the disease trajectory varies widely across the country with the burden shifting from cities with relatively robust health systems to rural areas, where resources are scarce or nonexistent.
Kerala state's top elected official Pinarayi Vijayan tweeted that dozens of people were feared trapped and teams from the National Disaster Response Force were on their way to Idukki district's Rajamalai area where the mudslide occurred.